Betty Gail Russell was born on June 4, 1935 in St. Louis to John and Betty Russell. The family moved to Mexico when Gail was a preschooler and she spent her entire childhood in Mexico. The Russell’s owned Park and Shop Market for many years and Betty also worked as a teller at First National Bank.
Gail was always fun to be around and she had lots of friends. She loved school and was an outstanding student. In high school, one of her teachers discovered that she had a beautiful voice. She was often chosen to sing solos in the school and church choirs. She graduated from Mexico High School in 1953. Many of her classmates remained lifelong friends.
After high school, Gail attended Columbia College and the University of Missouri. She married George Poole in 1955 and they were later divorced. Their son Bill was a wonderful addition to their family and Gail loved being a mother. Later, when her two grandsons, Ben and Will, arrived, she enjoyed spending as much time as possible with them.
Gail spent most of her married life in Springfield, Missouri, which is where her memorial service will be held. The service will be on Saturday, November 9 at 11:00 a.m. at St. James Episcopal Church, 2645 E. Southern Hills Blvd. Springfield, MO 65804. A lunch will be served at the church following the service.
Both of her parents preceded her in death. She is survived by one sister, Joy Sue Russell Lee who lives in Billings, Montana. She is also survived by her son, William D. Poole and his wife, Alicia and their children Benjamin and William who live in North Kansas City.
Gail will be greatly missed by those who knew her and loved her. During her later years, she was presented with many health challenges, to which she responded with courage and determination. One of her last journal entries read “KEEP YOUR SENSE OF HUMOR! NEVER DISPAIR! DO NOT GET DISCOURAGED, THERE WILL BE SETBACKS… PERSERVERE!”
Her smile and laughter will be with us forever. Memories of Gail and condolences to her family may be shared at www.meyersfuneralchapel.com