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Roy Ernest Reynolds

January 18, 1941 ~ September 17, 2021 (age 80)


Roy Reynolds died September 17 at EIRMC after a fall at home. Roy was born in Idaho Falls on January 18, 1941, the child of Von and Wanda Reynolds. Roy first expressed his artistic vision as a child by drawing on the walls at home. He continued developing his artistic talent in high school where he studied with Helen Aupperle.

Growing up in Idaho Falls, Roy became acquainted with the colorful, eccentric characters who would later become central to many of his pieces. Roy earned a scholarship to the Art Center School of Los Angeles where he gained experience in commercial art, but the glittering, fast paced, and hectic lifestyle held no appeal for Roy.

He returned to Idaho to work as a cowboy and painted in his spare time. Roy married Mon’nette Bell in 1976 and helped raise her three boys, who loved him dearly. They had a son, Zachary, to complete the family. Roy's talent caught the eye of singer/songwriter Carole King who shared his love for Idaho and hired him to be her art director. Roy designed the cover for her album "Simple Things". Roy and Mon’nette remained friends with Carole all his life.

Roy started work as a graphic designer at the INEL despite offers for jobs at such places as Disney. The job enabled Roy to continue his artwork at home. His INEL career earned him many awards for his graphic design work. The Department of Interior chose Roy’s watercolors to illustrate the Montana Bison Management Plan.

After 25 years with the INL, Roy retired to his studio to devote himself fully to painting and family life. Roy's art brought him awards and community accolades. He painted primarily in oils and had a unique impressionistic style. He also did many bronze sculptures. His iconic sculpture The Fur Trader is an imposing presence on the river walkway in Idaho Falls. Roy found his artistic vision in the landscape, flora and people of eastern Idaho. His subjects ranged from local architecture to street people, from farm fields to iris gardens, from nudes to American Indian festival dancers.

Roy was warm, witty and accommodating to his family and friends. His calm demeanor concealed a sharp mind full of an eclectic variety of interests. Roy was always fully himself, bitingly honest, original, creative, and endowed with a wicked sense of humor.

Roy is survived by his wife Mon’nette Ashton Bell Reynolds; his sons and daughter: Michael (Diana) Bell of Boise, Bart (Nancy Juell) Bell of Idaho Falls, Jeffrey (Kristy) Bell of Montana, Zachary Reynolds of Boise, Christopher Reynolds of Idaho Falls, and Cassidy Reynolds of Oregon.

Roy's 12 grandchildren include Robert Michael (Sara), Hailey Poulson (Nick), and Blake; Dylan, Chase, and Stara Bell; Destiny (Art) Jimenez; Christopher Jr. (Cece) and Lyndsay Reynolds; and Deveny, Mahaila, and Avarie Reynolds. Roy is also survived by 10 great grandchildren, his brother Vic (Charla Behrens) of Idaho Falls, sister-in-law Karan Reynolds, his nephew Jason, and his god daughter, Alexa Stanger. He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother Steve (Karan).

The family will hold a private interment. A Celebration of Life will be held October 9 from 5 to 8 pm at the Art Museum of Eastern Idaho, 300 S. Capital Ave., Idaho Falls. The family requests that any memorial contributions be made to the Art Museum of Eastern Idaho or NAMI (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill), PO Box 62596, Baltimore, MD 21864.






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