Dr. David W. Schell

Published 4:20 pm Saturday, May 16, 2015

David Walter Schell, Ed.D. passed away at home on May 15, 2015. He was 74 years old. Born December 30, 1940, in Kansas City, Mo., David was the first child of Walter and Maxine Schell. His daughter, Kymn Barton lives in Gadsden with her husband Marty. Grandchildren include Pamella Vann of Gadsden; Amy Allen of Margaret; John Spurlock of Gadsden, Michael Barton of Gadsden, Matthew Barton of Gadsden and Kristin Barton of Gadsden. Great Grandchildren include Addison (Addie-Kate) Vann, Avery Allen, Dakota Spurlock, Sheppard Barton and Dane Hamilton.

He is survived by two younger brothers, Daniel R. Schell and his wife, Bonita of Kansas City, and John W. Schell and his wife Barbara of Athens, Ga. In addition nephews and nieces include, Duane Schell, Greg Schell, Stephanie Holloway, J. Bradley Schell and Alyxius Schell Young.

On September 12, 1959, David and Zela Lore Adkins were joined in a marriage shortly after graduating from Raytown High School.  David attended Southwest Baptist University where he obtained an associate of arts degree, and during which time Kymn was born.

Later David and Zela attended Howard Payne College in Brownwood, Texas, where David earned a bachelor of science. While serving as a pastor for Fairview Baptist Church in Butler, Mo., he attended the Midwestern Baptist Seminary, where he earned a masters of religious education. He, Zela and Kymn next moved to attend the New Orleans Baptist Seminary where David earned an Ed.D. specializing in pastoral counseling.

After briefly teaching psychology at Livingston University, David and Zela moved to Selma where he joined the staff of the Cahaba Center for Mental Health as a Licensed Professional Counselor. After retiring, David established a private counseling practice in Selma Zela and David were married 45 years until her death in 2005.

In addition to his counseling work, David authored three books. His first book, “Getting Bitter or Getting Better” (1990) was published in a variety of languages and reprinted several times. More recently he authored “Holy Cow, I have Cancer: Now What?” and “Holy Cow, I have Cancer: But, I’m Still Here.” His wish in writing these books for cancer victims was to give comfort and assurance to those experiencing this disease.

David conducted many professional development workshops for other mental health professionals and was known for his common sense approach to life and therapy, both of which were greatly supplemented by his gentle humor.

In his spare time, David was an avid motorist who loved motorcycles and had an extensive collection of restored antique automobiles. He was also an enthusiastic aviator holding a private pilot’s license and ownership of a small airplane that he flew with his best friend and co-pilot, Joan Pardue.

David was a member of the First Baptist Church of Selma. He prided himself on being a contrarian and in asking his fellow Sunday school participants life’s most difficult questions.

A visitation will be held at the Selma Funeral Home from 9-11 a.m. Monday, May 18, 2015. The address is 5171 Alabama Highway 22 in Valley Grande. The funeral will follow at 11 a.m. David will be laid to rest with Zela in the New Live Oak Cemetery, 110 West Dallas Avenue, Selma, AL. Following the interment family will receive friends at the home, 2405 Overlook Drive, Valley Grande, AL 36701.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the United Children’s Methodist Home, 3140 Zelda Court, Montgomery, AL 36106. Donations can also be made on-line: https://910.thankyou4caring.org/donate.

Please visit http://www.selmafuneralhome.com/  to view the obituary, sign the guest registry and offer online condolences.