Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

AN INDEPENDENT STUDENT NEWSPAPER SERVING THE GW COMMUNITY SINCE 1904

The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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Alumnus held captive for 89 months during Vietnam War dies

An alumnus who spent seven and a half years in captivity during the Vietnam War died of complications from Parkinson’s disease last week. He was 83 years old.

James F. Bell had received a master’s degree in administration from GW, the Washington Post reported.

Bell graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1954. While flying a reconnaissance mission in 1965, the Navy captain and pilot was shot down by antiaircraft fire. He was later released and brought back to the U.S. in 1973.

At one time during his imprisonment, Bell was in the same group of soldiers as John McCain, now a Republican senator for Arizona.

Bell received the Purple Heart, two Silver Stars, the Bronze Star with Combat V and two Legions of Merit.

After Bell retired from the Navy, he became an engineering consultant, and spent the last 40 years living in Alexandria, Va.

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