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Frederick James Isbell, 71, passed away at home on Friday, Sept. 11, 2020, surrounded by his loving family after an extended illness.

Fred was born in Sayre, Pennsylvania, on June 28, 1949 and was the son of Floyd and Bertha Genevieve Slater Isbell. He attended Towanda Area High School and graduated in 1968.  He operated his family’s dairy farm in North Towanda from the time he graduated until 2002. He later went to work for Cole’s Excavating and Trucking in Milan, Pennsylvania, where he worked until retirement.

Fred was a member of FFA (Future Farmers of America) while in high school and served as president of the Bradford County FFA in 1967 when he received the American Farmer Degree. This award is achieved by individuals who display leadership and enterprise skills in both the home FFA chapter and in the area, personal investment, farm production, scholarship, including offices held in their FFA. They must be active in the community, and participate in extra cirricular activities. Fred was a member of the Towanda High School band, where he played the trumpet.

Please send any donations to the Athens Area High School FFA, c/o David Steinfelt, 401 West Frederick Street, Athens, PA 18810 in loving memory of Frederick James Isbell.

Fred was a member of the Ulster United Methodist Church, Sons of Italy, Sayre VFW, Monroeton Rod & Gun Club and the Towanda Elks, and a member of the Pennsylvania Farmers’ Association. In his younger years he enjoyed pulling tractors and travelled to participate as much as he could. 

During his retirement he enjoyed rebuilding and pulling antique tractors.

 Fred also enjoyed going on Elk and Caribou hunting trips. He loved dancing and would attend New Year’s Eve events to ring in the new year. Fred will be remembered for his sense of humor, hard working nature, his obvious love of his cows, his intensity of being a good steward of his land, his desire to get up and get going each day to stay busy, and his caring, loving personality.

He is survived by his wife, Cynthia M. Everly Isbell, of Ulster, Pennsylvania; his children, Floyd Leslie Isbell, (Kaci S. Kellogg) of Ulster, Tammy Isbell Bennett (Kevin L.) of Towanda, Pennsylvania, Crystal Isbell Potter of Towanda and Jonathan Fitzgerald Isbell (Christina) of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma; 14 grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; sisters, Mary Margaret Isbell (Cole) Sherman of Mansfield, Pennsylvania and Roberta Isbell Ayers of Troy, Pennsylvania; brother, Fay Isbell of Sulphur Springs, Texas; and several nieces and nephews.

Fred was preceded in death by his brother, Kenneth Philemon Isbell and his parents.

A celebration of Fred’s life will begin at 2 p.m. at his farm, 1012 Slater Hill Road, Ulster, PA on Sept. 26, 2020, with a memorial service at 3 p.m. Interment will be private at the convenience of the family.  

Memories and condolences for the family may be shared by visiting his guest book at

Caring assistance is being provided by Cooley-Tioga Point Cremation & Burial Options, Inc. 802 N. Main St., Athens, PA 18810.

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