Phillip Bell, who owned Lewis Funeral Home at 311 North Patrick Street, is fondly remembered as Chick by many African Americans in Alexandria, Virginia. Phillip ran a professional funeral business for many years on Wolfe and Patrick Streets and knew most of the African Americans in Alexandria and they too knew him. Since Chick was a native Alexandrian, most of the old-timers would seek out his service in their time of need.
According to the Alexandria Gazette Packet, “Lewis Funeral Home was a family business. Chick started in the funeral business after he returned from the military in the 1950s. He worked with his uncle Lloyd Lewis who owned the funeral home at 800 Wolfe Street. Lloyd received his mortuary training in New York from the American Academy of Funeral Services in the 1920s, and after gaining valuable experience from his uncle, Chick decided to study in New York at the same Academy that his uncle attended.”
As per Alexandria Gazette Packet, “Chick continued the family business with the help of his daughter, Winona, who provided administrative assistance and ran errands for her dad. They continued to provide great service to their customers until Chick sold the business in the mid-1990s; he managed the business until he started a new business.
After leaving the Lewis Funeral Home in Alexandria, Chick and his daughter opened another family funeral business in 2009 in Maryland called Phillip Bell Sr. & Winona Morrissette-Johnson Funeral Services, P. A. Just like the old days, Chick and his daughter continued to provide funeral services to the families in Alexandria.
On June 2, 2015, Phillip Bell Sr. died. His daughter, Winona, continues her father’s legacy in providing outstanding service to her customers.”