George Bell, the tallest man in America

Americans, on average, are rather tall people and the tallest of them is George Bell of Virginia.Bell

The lanky, 7-foot-8 Norfolk sheriff’s deputy is being recognized
Thursday by Guinness World Records as the Tallest Man in the United

That makes him 2 inches taller than the NBA’s current
tallest player, Yao Ming, but too short to be the world’s tallest
living man.

He stands below, according to Guinness, Ukraine’s 8-foot-5.5 Leonid Stadnyk and China’s Bao Xi Shun, who is 7 feet 8.95 inches. [Link]

I’d like to see a meeting between Stadnyk and Bell.

Stadnyk: "Hey shrimp!"

Bell: "Who ya calling shrimp?"

Stadnyk: "You, of course. You’re shorter than my mama."

Bell: "Your mama just called. She wants you to come to the zoo pronto and don’t forget your giraffe suit."

Guinness began searching for America’s tallest man in August.

Bell’s ex-wife registered him online, and Guinness spokesman Stuart Claxton said Bell’s doctor documented his height. [Link]

He must have a good relationship with his ex-wife. If my wife and I were divorced and she had to write something about my height, there’s no doubt what she’d write: "My ex-husband is the height of stupidity."

His height doesn’t intimidate jail inmates — it helps him develop a rapport.

"They’ve never seen anyone this tall before, so they’re amazed," Bell said. "They want to talk."

Bell focuses on the perks of being tall. For example, he usually gets
free upgrades to first class on flights when the ticket-counter
attendants realize he’s going to need a lot of leg room. [Link]

There are several other advantages to being tall:

  • He doesn’t have to buy tickets to football games. He just stands in the parking lot.
  • He’s the first to know when it starts to rain.
  • When he dives into the swimming pool, he’s already at the other end.
  • He can put his head through the sunroof while driving his car.
  • If it weren’t for him, the children in his neighborhood would never be able to go mountain-climbing.
If you enjoyed this piece, you'll love Melvin's novel Bala Takes the Plunge, available in North America through and You can also find it at major bookstores in India and Sri Lanka or online at FlipKart, IndiaPlaza, FriendsofBooks or other sites. A number of readers have written reviews of the novel. An excerpt of the novel can be read here.

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