- August 25, 2023
Tamara “Tammy” Jean (Bell) Rodriguez went to her heavenly home early Tuesday morning, August 22nd. Her bravery and toughness throughout her illness surprised no one as she was one of the most determined people you could ever meet. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, August 28, 2023, at Spring of Life Church in Cedar Rapids, with a visitation one hour prior. Private family burial will be held at Linwood Cemetery in Cedar Rapids. Murdoch-Linwood Funeral Home & Cremation Service in Cedar Rapids assisted the family.
Tammy was born and raised in Cedar Rapids and graduated from Kennedy High School in 1978. She attended Wartburg College in Waverly and graduated Summa cum laude with a degree in German in 1982. She spent a year and a half studying in West Germany in pursuit of her degree. Locals thought she was from Scandinavia because she worked long and hard to reduce her accent, a high compliment.
Tammy was a lifelong member of Springs of Life, a Foursquare church, and her Faith was at the core of her life. She spent many years helping in the nursery, serving coffee before services, and assisted keeping the books.
Tammy was a gifted athlete, playing softball and volleyball for many years. She played in the 1994 slow pitch softball World Series in Arizona, where her team The CMF&Z Badfish won the championship. She passed her skill and knowledge on to her sons, often throwing and practicing grounders in the backyard, passing the soccer ball around, and taking batting practice in the park. She coached her elder son’s baseball team to the league championship in 1995. She was both her son’s biggest fan, attending virtually every game for 15 years.
Tammy believed in education, pushing her sons to learn and achieve. She spent many hours volunteering in her sons’ classes and in their schools.
Tammy was ever present in printing in the Cedar Rapids area for 40 years, with connections to almost everyone in the business throughout that time.
Tammy was an excellent cook and master baker and if you knew her, you certainly tried one of her tens of thousands of cookies she lovingly distributed for every holiday year-round. She instilled the love of the art of food to her sons from an early age and that bond was strong throughout her life.
Family was at the core of Tammy’s life. She was always available to help and made it her mission to make people feel special on important days. She is survived by her sons, Jeremy and Jon; her father, George Bell; her sister, Paula and her husband Jeff Larson; her brother, Tom Bell and his wife Nicole; and many cousins, nieces, and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her grandparents Gilbert and Goldie Bell and Fred and Dorathy Welsh, her mother Nancy Bell, and her aunt Susan Welsh.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Springs of Life Church.
Please share a memory of Tammy at www.murdochfuneralhome.com under obituaries.