Jāzeps Šķēls was born on 14 January, 1924, in the parish of Varakļāni. He was mobilized into the Latvian Legion in June 1943 and assigned to be a soldier in an anti-aircraft division. His fight against the second Soviet occupation of Latvia was unsuccessful – he was injured in battle in Russia and at the end of the war was in Zedelgem Prisoner of War Camp in Belgium. He later moved to Perth, Australia, but his family remained in Latvia. For many years he was a member of the Latvian Society of Western Australia and a member of the Daugavas Vanagi Perth branch.
Jāzeps Šķēls was a generous supporter of the Museum of the Occupation of Latvia. He donated to Lestene Brother's Cemetery, and, as an avid reader, sent books to Latvian schools. He passed away alone in his home in Perth on 19 November 2015.
This year, on 16 august, in the presence of the Dobele Battalion of the Latvian National Guard, the ashes of Jāzeps Šķēls were buried with military honours in Lestene Brother's Cemetery, alongside his fellow soldiers. The burial was led by deacon Klāvs Bērsiņš. Jāzeps' family were also present, as well as Commander Marek Jansons of the Dobele Battalion of the Latvian National Guard, Edgars Skreija the Chairman of the Latvian National Soldier's association, Chairman of the Board of the Museum of the Occupation of Latvia Valters Nollendorfs, the museum's director Gunārs Nāgels and deputy director Taiga Kokneviča, Head of Daugavas Vanagi in Latvia Andrejs Mežmalis, Honoury Leader of Daugavas Vanadžes Ilga Niradija and others.