Edwin J Bowers
February 8, 1919 – January 14, 2015
Services for Colonel Edwin J. Mantooth Bowers will be held at 3:00 p.m. Sunday, January 18, 2014, at the First Christian Church in Lufkin with Pastor Stephen Lantis officiating. Interment will follow in the Garden of Memories Memorial Park. Colonel Edwin J. Mantooth Bowers, “E.J.” Bowers,” transitioned peacefully to his heavenly home with the Lord on January 14, 2015. He would have been 96 years old on February 8th. His devotion to his family and his love for the Lord were apparent to all who knew him. A life-long resident of Lufkin, Texas, E.J. was born to the late Harry Toulmin Bowers and Robbie Jean Mantooth Bowers. A retired Colonel in the United States Air Force, he was truly one of the honorable men in our country’s “Greatest Generation.” He was a long-time member of the First Christian Church, and he will be missed in his “pew” on Sunday mornings. E.J. graduated from Lufkin High School and attended Texas A&M University. He served on active duty in the U. S. Air Force from 1941 to 1946 and continued as a member of the Air Force Reserve until he retired in 1979 as Colonel Edwin J. Mantooth Bowers. E.J. was employed for 36 years by Southland Paper Mill and its successor, St. Regis Paper Mill, retiring in 1983 as Land Manager. Among his professional accomplishments, he served for many years on the Board of Directors of the Lufkin-Conroe Communication Company. This was Lufkin’s original phone company, co-founded by his grandfather, the late Judge Edwin J. Mantooth of Lufkin. Texas. Also, he served as the President of the Texas Surveyors Association in 1978. On September 7, 1941, E.J. married the only love of his life, Johnanna Laxson Bowers, who preceded him in death on August 23, 2003. During their 62 years of faithful, devoted marriage, he and Johnanna raised two sons, Edwin and Bill, who are forever grateful for the strong family heritage and values passed on to them throughout a lifetime. E.J. and Johnanna enjoyed traveling to almost every continent in the world during his retirement years. His family especially loved hearing him tell the many anecdotes of his life, including his early childhood years when the family grew their own food and smoked their own meat in the smokehouse on their property. They never tired of hearing his many stories of times while in the Air Force. Stories included flying his plane under the Golden Gate Bridge, as well as some interesting landings. E.J. enjoyed making friends wherever he ventured, including a host of new friends during the final few months of his life as a resident of the Juliette Fowler Community in Dallas. All who knew him will miss his optimistic spirit, his fun-loving nature, his generous heart, and his loyalty to faith, family, and country. E.J. was preceded in death by his wife, Johnanna; his parents, Harry and Robbie Bowers; his brother, Harry T. Bowers; and his two sisters, Cleo Cunningham and Callie Green. He is survived by his sister, Jennie Busch; his son, Edwin and wife Marie; his son, Bill and wife Jody; by five grandchildren and their spouses including Edwin’s sons and wives, John and Alaina Bowers, Sam and Valerie Bowers, Jacob and Aracely Bowers, and Bill’s daughter and son and their spouses, Cori and Chad Baird and Brian and Barbara Bowers; by ten great-grandchildren; and many beloved nieces and nephews. Pallbearers include his grandsons, John Bowers, Sam Bowers, Jacob Bowers, and Brian Bowers; his great-grandson, Hunter Bowers; and his grandson-in-law, Chad Baird. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in E.J.’s memory may be made to Juliette Fowler Memorial Fund, 1234 Abrams Road, Dallas, TX 75214; or The First Christian Church Children’s Ministry Memorial Fund, 1300 South First Street, Lufkin, TX 75901. Condolences may be offered at www.gipsonfuneralhome.com Services have been placed in the trust of Gipson Funeral Home.
- Visitation Saturday, January 17, 2015
- Funeral Service Sunday, January 18, 2015