H. Preston Bissell
1938 ~ 2007
H. Preston Bissell died on Monday, October 22 of a brain tumor, at home with hospice.
He was born October 4, 1938, in Provo, Utah, the oldest child of Dr. Harold J and Ilene (Affleck) Bissell. He grew up in Provo, attending the Joaquin Elementary School and graduating from BYU High School in l956. He graduated from Brigham Young University in l963 with a major in geography. He subsequently earned an MA degree in geography from the University of Hawaii in l965, where he attended on an East-West Center scholarship.
Following that he taught at Bemidji State College in Minnesota for three years. There he met and married his life's companion, Mary Kay Brummer in l967. He then attended the University of Oklahoma, receiving a Ph.D in geography in 1971. He taught at the U of W--Eau Claire for two years and then was the first director of the Chippewa Valley Museum. He resigned from that position in l978 to teach at McDonell High School in Chippewa Falls, WI. He taught a variety of subjects there for the next 22 years, retiring in 2000. Then he taught part-time for three more years at Regis High School in Eau Claire.
He was able to travel the world over during his lifetime and visited almost 50 countries in Europe, Asia, Africa, South and Central America and the South Pacific. During retirement he took up woodcarving and growing perennials.
He is survived by his wife Mary Kay, his brother Steven (Denver CO), his sister Anita (NH) and their families. He is further survived by a foster daughter Mollie Bailey and her sons Connor and Riley (Heathrow, FL)
A memorial service will be held at St. Bede's Monastery on Sat. Oct. 27; visitation will be from 10:00 until the service begins at 11:30. Memorials may be sent to the McDonell High School Scholarship Fund.
Family and friends may send condolences online at