Longtime Exeter businessman Ross Sellars, Jr. dies at 84

Memorial graveside services for Ross D. Sellars, Jr., 84, of Exeter will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 12 at the Exeter Cemetery. He passed away quietly at his home in Exeter May 8, 2007 with his family by his side.

He was born to Ross and Alma Sellars on Aug. 12, 1922 in Exeter. The Sellars are a pioneering family in the Exeter business community.

That same year, his father established Ross D. Sellars & Sons insurance in 1922, which later became Sellars Insurance Inc. Sellars Insurance was part of one of the largest mergers in Exeter history in 1974 when Sellars merged with the other prominent insurance company in Exeter, Nielsen & Eddy Insurance. Ross, Jr. became one of principals of the company along with Dale Eddy and Bill Nielsen to form NSE Insurance Agencies, one of Exeter's oldest businesses.

After serving his country as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy in the South Pacific during World War II, Ross, Jr. attended the University of Southern California.

After graduation, he returned home and started working for his father and brother, Giroux, at Sellars Insurance in 1947.

He married his only true love, Helen Aileen Hinds, in 1949 in Exeter and they were married for 50 years when she passed away Nov. 12, 2000.

Ross Jr. became the youngest member of the Exeter Kiwanis Club when he joined at the age of 30 in 1952. He later became president of the club in 1963. In 1989 he served as head of the Tulare County Trade Club. Ross, Jr. was also a member of the Visalia Elks Club, Past President of the Exeter Chamber of Commerce, American Legion Post 94, Exeter Masonic Lodge 424, and Tulare County Shrine Club. A 1940 graduate of Exeter Union High School, he was named Alumnus of the Year in 2005.

He enjoyed RV traveling, working on his citrus ranch and relaxing at his cabin in Mineral King.

He is survived by his sons, Dow Sellars and Greg Sellars both of Exeter; a daughter, Lynn Bardone of Battle Ground, Wash.; and four grandchildren.

Online condolences may be made at www.smithfamilychapel.com. In lieu of flowers, donations to Hospice of Tulare County may be sent to 900 W. Oak, Visalia, CA 93291. Arrangements by Smith Family Chapel, Exeter.

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