Don Allison Bowman-Johnson City, TN
Don A. Bowman, 92, died unexpectedly of natural causes on January 15, 2021, at Quillen VA Hospital. He was born February 5, 1928, in Telford, TN, the son of Benjamin M. Bowman and Essie Mae (Taylor) Bowman.
Don graduated from the University of Tennessee with a Master’s Degree in Animal Husbandry. Following graduation, he served two years in the U.S. Army. He met his wife, Emily Joyce Dennis at the University of Tennessee and they celebrated 65 years of marriage in September. They moved to D.C, Chicago, IL, Des Moines, IA, Twin Falls, ID, and Ogden, UT, for his job as an animal buyer for Swift & Company. They eventually settled in Conyers, GA, in 1971 and opened Bow-Mar Nursery & Landscaping. The business thrived for 26 years with Don retiring at age 70. Don was an active member of the Conyers Presbyterian Church Choir, served on various civic committees, and an avid gardener. Don & Joyce relocated to Johnson City, TN, in 2017 to be closer to family.
Mr. Bowman was an active 4-H member in Washington County in the late 1940s. He went on to serve as the first Tennessee 4-H Congress Governor, first State 4-H All-Star Chief, and first Tennessee 4-H State Council President. Mr. Bowman was selected to represent 4-H at two different meetings with then-President Harry S. Truman. 4-H Alumni across Tennessee will recognize Mr. Bowman based on the “Tradition of the Gavel.”. Mr. Bowman carved the gavel that is still used by the 4-H members using a piece of cherry wood that came out of the courthouse in Jonesborough, the oldest city in Tennessee.
In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by a brother, William Bowman. Surviving in addition to his wife Joyce Bowman, are his daughters Lee Ann Bowman and her boyfriend Ryan Reynolds of Gray, TN, and Alison (Bowman) Jones and her husband Blake Jones of Greensboro, NC, sister-in-law Evelyn Bowman of Erwin, TN, sister-in-law Betty Reid of Seattle, WA, niece Vicki (Bowman) Jackson and her husband Mickey of Unicoi, TN, nephew Ben Bowman and his wife Teresa of Jonesborough, TN, and nephew Rodney Shutt and his partner Gary Davis of Seattle, WA.
A family graveside service will be held at a later date.
Those who wish to remember Don can make donations to Tennessee 4-H Foundation, 2621 Morgan Circle Room 205, Knoxville, TN 37996-4510 or tn4hfoundation.org.
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