Elizabeth Grathwol, 90, Former Darien Resident

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Elizabeth Bell Grathwol, 90, of Columbus, Ga. passed away at home on Thursday, Aug. 17. 

ObitElizabeth Grathwol was born Ada Elizabeth Bell on Aug. 12, in Columbus, Ga. Her parents were Samps K. Bell of Preston, GA and Ruth McElvany Bell of Conyers, Ga.

During her childhood, Elizabeth and her family lived at Ft. Benning. In the 1930s Elizabeth’s father was the manager of the farm providing fruit and vegetables on the base.

Elizabeth and her younger sister, Charlotte attended the Ft. Benning Children’s School and enjoyed playing in the fields and climbing the beacon tower when no one was watching.

When World War II began the farm was converted for paratrooper training and later the family settled in a house on St. Mary’s Road. This property was redeveloped several years ago and in honor of the family is named Bell Haven.


an obituary from Striffler-Hamby Mortuary


Elizabeth graduated from Jordan High School and moved to Washington DC where she met her husband of 56 years, H. Jack Grathwol. Jack passed away in 2006 after a long career with National Airlines retiring as VP for Marketing, Europe.

As the airline industry grew, Liz and Jack moved to different posts along the east coast. They lived in Charleston, S.C., Miami Fl. and in the 1960s in Darien, where Liz worked in administration for Laminated Shim. Her colleagues from this era became lifelong friends.

Liz often joined her husband in traveling the world for business trips. She admitted to being a nervous flyer at first but later took many interesting trips to Europe, Scandinavia and South America. She particularly enjoyed living in London for a year prior to Jack’s retirement.

After retirement, Liz and Jack indulged their passion for golf as members of the Bent Tree Golf Club in Sarasota FL with a home adjoining the golf course. They thoroughly enjoyed the community there until moving to Columbus to be closer to Liz’s parents and her sister, Charlotte Bell Brookshire.

Elizabeth was a lifelong cat lover, an accomplished painter of landscapes and nature and she loved to bake for family and friends. Her passion for golf never waned and she was an active member of Maple Ridge Golf Club until very recently. She was a gracious, loyal and generous friend to many in the Columbus community.

She is survived by several cousins, including Martha Sue Collins of Leesburg, Ga. and two god-daughters, Penny Clark of Tampa, Fl. and Barbara Bartlett of New York City.

A celebration of her life will be held at 2 pm on Saturday, Aug. 26 at Striffler-Hamby Mortuary, 4071 Macon Road, Columbus.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in her name to PAWs Humane, 4900 Milgen Road, Columbus, GA 31902 or www.pawshumane.org ; or Valley Rescue Mission, PO Box 1232, Columbus, GA 31902, www.valleyrescue.org.
Condolences may be left at www.shcolumbus.com.