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James Denzal Beall

of North Little Rock, AR, 1919 - 2014

James Denzal Beall, Another member of the "Greatest Generation" is gone!
J. Denzal Beall, Col. (USAF) retired, age 95 years, three months and 19 days died on December 23. He was a deacon serving the Park Hill Baptist Church for many years. He was preceded in death by Martha House Beall, his wife of 46 years.
He is survived by his wife of 24 years, Opal Morrison Beall; two daughters, Barbara Crockett (Davy) of Little Rock, and Kathy Freeman (Michael) of Fayetteville, Ark., one sister, Eliza Vancleve of Gravel Ridge, eight grandchildren, Audrey Watkins (Phil), Vicki Wilson (Tom), Jennifer Stephens (Roy), Adam Crockett (Heather), and Luke (Natalie), Joel, Madelyn and David Freeman, seven great-grandchildren and one great-great grandson.
Col. Beall held the rank of Command pilot and logged 8,000 hours of flying time which included 45 missions flying "over the hump" between India and China during WWII, and 43 missions over North Korea during the Korean Conflict. He was also part of the team of aircraft pilots on the rescue/recovery mission of the first Apollo crew to splash down in the Pacific. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal and numerous other medals in recognition of military service.
He was more than a war hero. Orphaned at the age of eight, he overcame much to have a life well lived. Throughout his life he constantly served others and was known for his integrity, great sense of humor and ability to do many things well. In his time, he was an avid hunter and fisherman. He was also a master craftsman in woodworking, and loved to make useful, beautiful things for family members and friends. He set a good example for all of us.
The family will receive friends from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., Friday, December 26, 2014, followed by funeral services at 11 a.m., at Smith - North Little Rock Funeral Home with Dr. Ken Shaddox and Dr. Cary Heard officiating. Pall bearers will be his grandsons: Luke, Joel and David Freeman, Adam Crockett, grandsons-in-law, Phillip Watkins, Tom Wilson, and Roy Stephens. (Internment will be at the Rest Hills Memorial Park on Monday, December 29, 2014 for family only)
Memorials may be made to the Park Hill Baptist Church, 201 East C Street, North Little Rock, Arkansas 72116.
Online obituary at

Published December 25, 2014

North Little Rock Funeral Home
1921 Main St, North Little Rock, AR
Phone: 501-758-1170