West Plains, MO Location (417) 256-4141

Thayer, MO Location (417) 264-7242

James Lynn Murrell

James Lynn Murrell, 68, of Willow Springs, Missouri, passed from this earth on October 12, 2018 at Mercy Hospice in Springfield, Missouri.

He was born to Jim Martin Murrell and Sarah Estelle Cearley Murrell on April 2, 1950.

James and Jeanne Feller Haubert Murrell were married April 21, 1984 at Oak Grove Baptist Church. James was a member of Oak Grove Baptist Church and was baptized at an early age. He was a member of Ingomar Masonic Lodge #536, and was on the MFA Advisory Board. He was also a “member” of Conley’s “good ole boy” club in Pomona and enjoyed his time with the guys there.

James was a loving son, brother, uncle, cousin, husband, stepfather, a good neighbor and friend to all. He was a wise, kind and gentle soul.

James had a passion for nature and the land. He worked the family farm where he was raised, and loved his Angus herd, “his girls.” He always planted for wildlife, loved growing vegetables and flowers, enjoyed canning and giving away his goods.

James worked for the Forest Service on the Mark Twain National Forest for 42 years, retiring December 31, 2011. He was a firefighter, fighting fires locally and west in California, Idaho, Wyoming and north in Minnesota. He was an expert timber faller, range technician, wilderness ranger, recreation technician, and a certified Para-Professional Archeologist for the Mark Twain. He knew the Mark Twain like no one else, and was called on many search and rescues by local law enforcement. At the end of his career he and many loyal volunteers took care of miles of trails on the Ridgerunner, Devil’s Backbone and other areas.

Together James and Jeanne took a number of trips to the California central coast. James was always on the trails, or exploring the beaches. Many trips took them to Wyoming, Yellowstone, the Badlands of South Dakota, Arizona including the Grand Canyon, and trails in Flagstaff and Sedona. The two spent their honeymoon in the Smokey Mountain National Park, exploring the battlefields of the south. They also went to western Michigan many times and to the Allegheny Mountains in Pennsylvania. While traveling, James gained notoriety by looking like Phil on “Duck Dynasty.”

James is survived by his wife, Jeanne; stepdaughter Chris Noel Haubert and husband Randy, Marina, California; sisters, Pat McKee and husband, Dale, Willow Springs, Missouri, Linda Wade, Springfield, Missouri; brothers-in-law and wives, John and Bev Feller; Mike and Dianna Feller, West Plains, Missouri; Paul and Patty Feller, Cabot, Arkansas; Gary and Mary Bennett, Tempe, Arizona; sisters-in-law and husbands, Mary and Randy Berner, Nicole Layden, Mountain View, Missouri; Patty and Jack Ford, Springfield, Missouri; many nephews, nieces, family and friends. Special friend and “brother” John Armstrong and wife Jeannie, Fayetteville, Arkansas, and Maria, Mike and Evan Funk, Independence, Missouri.

James was preceded in death by his parents, James Martin and Sarah Estelle Murrell; an infant brother; sisters, Lois Crider, Marinda Lea Katsorelos, Norma Vance and Ruth Wright.

James’ spirit will live on forever in those whose lives he touched.

Memorial services will be held on Saturday, October 20, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. at Carter Funeral Home Chapel, West Plains, Missouri.

Visitation time will also be held on Saturday, October 20, 2018 from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. at Carter Funeral Home Chapel, West Plains, Missouri.



  1. Ken and Jeannie Stroven family
    October 16, 2018 @ 7:42 pm

    Hugs and prayers for you all.. James was a special man and will be missed by many.
    Heaven gained a angel..


  2. Doyle Henken
    October 17, 2018 @ 7:18 am

    I am very sorry for your loss. Those of us who worked with James know the great person he was. James alway had a calmness he brought to the workplace. Someday we’ll enjoy a home-brew beer together again.
    Doyle Henken
    retired silviculturist


  3. Grace Pruett
    October 17, 2018 @ 8:04 am

    So sorry for your loss.


  4. Diane F. Jeffery
    October 17, 2018 @ 9:04 am

    A terrific guy and a big loss to our family. My condolences to all.


  5. Mary Sue Meal
    October 17, 2018 @ 9:18 am

    Jeanie, I am so sorry for your loss, James was a special person, had many good visits, when you folks would come into MFA. Mary Sue Meal


  6. Bettina Sparrowe
    October 17, 2018 @ 9:42 am

    A classmate and very gentle man.


  7. Kay Holloway
    October 17, 2018 @ 1:09 pm

    So sorry to hear about James. I sure enjoyed working with him all those years. He was a great guy. So very kind.


  8. Donna Steed
    October 17, 2018 @ 1:15 pm


    I am sorry for your loss. I remember our discussions in Pomona and West Plains over the years. It’s been a long time. Thinking of you.


  9. Connie (Dablemont) Young Skyles
    October 17, 2018 @ 2:31 pm

    I worked with James at the Willow Springs Ranger District Office. James always had a smile on his face and was helpful. He answered many questions I had over the years. James was a good coworker and friend. He is the only one who could have talked me into trying grilled snake! Jeanne, I am sorry for your loss.


  10. Wanda Hardman
    October 17, 2018 @ 2:45 pm

    So sorry for the loss of a good friend and if you knew James, you would say he was “one of a kind” there was no one like him, He will be missed.

    RIP,. James Murrell

    Wanda & Lester Hardman


  11. Travis Morrison
    October 17, 2018 @ 3:01 pm

    Jeanne, and Pat and family, I am sorry but we will be in Ky this weekend for Kathy’s family reunion. Please accept my sympathy for the loss of James. He and you have been good friends and I am very sorry for your loss. James was very special. Travis Morrison


  12. Lisa Durnell
    October 17, 2018 @ 4:45 pm

    Jeanne, I am so sorry for your loss! This was such a shock to me, as Dean just talked with James not so long ago in MFA. You’ll be in my prayers, my friend. Love you and miss seeing you on a regular basis!


  13. Evonne Barron
    October 17, 2018 @ 7:23 pm

    I am so sorry for your loss. James was a wonderful person and my Jerry thought the world of him. Wish I could there for you. Please know you are in my thoughts and prayers.
    Evonne Barron


  14. Dave Easter
    October 17, 2018 @ 8:25 pm

    So sorry for your loss. I worked with James for a lot of years and he was a great guy.


  15. Pat Kowalewycz
    October 17, 2018 @ 9:11 pm

    Jeanne, I am so sorry to hear of James passing. He was a very special person who would always share his knowledge and love of the woods. I will always remember the knowledge that he handed down to me. Pat Kowalewycz, retired Distrct Ranger


  16. MARY and Gary Bennett
    October 17, 2018 @ 10:36 pm

    A beautiful man who was loved by all.
    He will be greatly missed by family and friends alike.
    Love you Jeanne


  17. Justin Adams
    October 18, 2018 @ 10:04 am

    What a great friend and mentor James was! He was one of the greatest teachers the FS ever had the privilege of claiming as an employee. It was an honor to work with him!


  18. David and Linda Poppitz
    October 19, 2018 @ 4:05 pm

    Jeannie, James was one of a kind we will miss him.


  19. Maureen & Bob LeRoy
    October 20, 2018 @ 4:44 pm

    Patty and Family, We are so sorry for your loss. Please rest east with the sure knowledge that you are loved and safe in the Father’s hand…as are James and Jeanne.


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