J. Wells Hull, one of the most influential businessmen in Platte City history, died last week. He was 85. A pillar of the community for decades, Hull worked at Wells Bank for more than three decades, including a stint as president for 12 years that lasted until his retirement in 1989. He stayed on as a consultant in later years and remained a very visible Platte County citizen.
Hull not only served the community in a professional capacity. Those who knew him remember his generosity, which left a legacy at Wells Bank.
“He certainly cared about his customer base and his community. He was very involved,” said longtime friend Jack Coots, who started working with Hull at Wells Bank in 1959 and took over as president after Hull’s retirement. “He was always very concerned about development, controlled development. He was very concerned that we did this with a great deal of input and thought so the results would be very beneficial to the community as a whole, even the county.
“He was a very dedicated banker. I thoroughly enjoyed my years in association with him.”
Born Aug. 7, 1930, Hull lived most of his life in his historic home on Fourth Street in Platte City, which was built in 1893 and remains in the family to this day. He graduated from Platte City High School in 1948 and went on to attend Park College and the University of Missouri, obtaining a degree in agricultural economics.
Hull also served in the United States Army and lived with his wife Margaret Lewis while stationed overseas.
Upon return to the United States, Hull again settled in Platte City to raise his two daughters and started work at Wells Bank as a teller in 1959. He worked his way up until becoming president in 1978. His wife died in 1996, and he married Bonnie Cooper Hull in 1998.
Hull was a member of the First Christian Church and served on church board along with duties as a deacon and trustee for 40 years. Services were held for him on Saturday, Nov. 21 at the church.