Gail Irene Pettus was born August 4, 1947, in Palo Alto, California to Benjamin and Willa Capp. She was a longtime resident of the city and a second-generation graduate of Palo Alto High School. Gail was employed with Walgreens for several years before she requested a transfer.
In 1994, Gail uprooted herself along with her daughter and moved to Okolona. She joined First Baptist Church of Okolona and became active in the church by teaching Sunday School.
After having a stroke in 1998, Gail was forced to retire from Walgreens with 25-plus years of employment with the company. She stayed active in the community and gained employment with the City of Okolona until moving to Pine Bluff to be closer to her daughter.
While being a faithful member of First Baptist Gail decided to move her membership to St. Clair Missionary Baptist Church. She became active in the church by serving as a member of the church newsletter staff. Gail was a member of St. Clair until her passing.
Being a grandmother was very important to Gail. She loved her grandchildren more than life itself and was extremely proud of them. Once they grew older and life was happening Gail moved to Little Rock in 2021 so she could continue to be the active social butterfly she was meant to be.
Gail was preceded in death by her parents, Benjamin Capp, Willa and Les Heald.
She will be missed by her daughter, Deaidra (Dishawn) Bell; three grandchildren, Romelo, Akira and Zanee Bell, all of White Hall; her stepbrother, Robert (Helen) Heald of Burke, Virginia; two stepnieces, Alison (Eric) Webb of Fairfax, Virginia; Katherine Heald of Burke, Virginia; two goddaughters, Myisia Brooks of San Francisco, California, and Tamara Adell-Harris of Conway, Arkansas; and other family members and friends.
The visitation was Thursday, Sept. 22, from noon to 5 p.m. at Mitchell Funeral Home in Arkadelphia. The celebration of life will be on Friday, Sept. 23, at St. Clair Baptist Church, where the late Rick Newburn served as pastor, in the Burtsell community at 11 a.m. Burial and final resting place will be at First Baptist Okolona Cemetery in Okolona.