Denzil H. Harrell, 76, of Smithville, GA, died January 11, 2023 at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital. Funeral services will be held Saturday, January 14, 2023 11:00AM at Friendship Baptist Church in Leesburg, GA with Military Honors provided by The American Legion. Rev. Mark Spraggins will officiate. Committal services will follow on January 20, 2023 at Andersonville National Cemetery at 10:00 am.
Denzil was born in El Paso, TX on September 3, 1946 to Holton and Reba Harrell. While still an infant, his family moved back home to Acree, GA. Denzil was in the first graduating class of 1965 at Dougherty High School. After High School, he served in The United States Army, attended Officers Candidate School and served as a Chinook Helicopter Pilot in Vietnam where he achieved the rank of Captain. He was later promoted to Major once his military commission expired.
After serving his country, Denzil moved to Smithville, GA and farmed from 1972 until 1977 and then went to work with Brown Trucking Company. He was employed with Roadway Express Trucking Company for many years before becoming an Independent Trucker and owing his own Trucking Company.
Denzil was a member of Friendship Baptist Church. He was a member of American Legion Post # 30 and a member and current Commander of American Legion Post # 182 in Leesburg, GA where he served on the Honor Guard. Denzil was also a member of the Vietnam Veterans Helicopter Pilot Association. Denzil had a great love for his country, and proudly wore his dress blues for any occasion that was appropriate.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a sister, Linda Presson.
Survivors include his wife, Melba Y. Harrell of Smithville, GA, a son, Jay (Lisa) Harrell of Warwick, GA, a daughter, Stacey (Britt) Weber of Gainesville, GA, a step-son, Kevin (Nancy) Shaul of Nanticoke, PA, his siblings, Donny (Meridona) Harrell of Moultrie, GA, Rodney (Jill) Harrell of Lee County, GA and Sue Sharman of Savannah, GA, his grandchildren, Kristen Harrell, Anna Harrell, Bryan Harrell, Kady Riddle and Isabelle Brock. Denzil also has several surviving aunts, cousins, nieces and nephews who he loved and adored.
The family will receive friends Friday, January 13, 2023 at Mathews Funeral Home from 6:00 pm until 8:00 pm. The family is also gathering at his residence in Smithville GA.
Those desiring may make memorials in memory of Denzil to Friendship Baptist Church or to The American Legions’ Post # 182 and #30 Honor Guard.