J.R. Bowman, age 93, of Erwin passed away early on Wednesday, April 14, 2021 at his home. J.R. is the son of the late William Ray and Prude C. (Tipton) Bowman. He grew up attending the family home church, Shallow Ford Baptist, in Erwin, TN and was a member of Calvary Baptist Church in Erwin, TN. He is preceded in death by his first wife, Judy Barnett Bowman; one son, Stephen Bowman; one brother, Hilbert Dean Bowman; two sisters: Alenia Minton, Wilburn Nave; brothers-in-law, Bob Minton, Dick Walker, Bruce Ledford; sister-in-law, Janet Bowman.
Mr. Bowman is survived by his loving wife of thirty years, Susan Lovins Bowman; sons: Ronald (Kathy) Bowman, Doug (Teresa) Bowman, Dan (Lisa) Bowman, Tom (Robin) Bowman and Tim (Agnes) Bowman; daughter, Beth (Joe) Page; daughter-in-law, Gail Keiger Bowman; children by marriage: Laura Beth (Bob) Fletcher, Sarah Anne (Andrew) Heil, Ashlee (Brandon) Hubbard-Heitz; one brother, Leonard (Jean) Bowman; two sisters: Freda Ledford, Barbara Walker; brother-in-law, John Nave; sister in law, Linda (Oscar) Napier. Mr. Bowman was blessed to have twenty-four grandchildren, fifteen great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild plus numerous beloved nieces and nephews.
Mr. Bowman was a United States Navy Veteran having served in the South Pacific during World II. Upon his return from service, he completed correspondence studies through Chicago Tech as well as local apprenticeships in addition to time spent in New York working on the Saint Lawrence Seaway. He then became a licensed General Contractor and formed Bowman Construction, now Bowman and Sons Construction, in 1960. He built numerous homes in the early years of his business and later constructed many commercial buildings, bridges, and schools. He also developed numerous sub-divisions and industrial parks throughout the Tri-State area of Tennessee, Virginia, and North Carolina. Mr. Bowman was actively involved in local, state, and federal politics and served on the Unicoi County Election Commission for many years. He was once elected to serve as a delegate to the Republican National Convention and served as the local Campaign Chair for numerous state and federal Republican candidates for office. Mr. Bowman was recognized for his achievements and received numerous awards and citations throughout his life including Statesman of the Year which was presented to him by Sen. Bill Frist in 2000.
The family would like to thank Dr. Jason Colinger and Vickie Osborne, F.N.P for their care for Mr. Bowman. The family would also like to express appreciation to Amedisys Hospice Services for their recent attentive care.
The family respectfully requests the honor of your presence as we celebrate the life of J.R. Bowman in a funeral service to be held at 2:00pm on Sunday, April 18, 2021, at Shallow Ford Baptist Church in Erwin, TN. Reverend Zach Smith will officiate with a special Eulogy provided by son, Ron Bowman. A visitation period with the family will begin at 12:30pm Sunday, April 18, 2021, and will continue until service time at Shallow Ford Church. A committal service will be held in Evergreen Cemetery immediately following the funeral. Pallbearers will be sons and sons-in-law: Doug Bowman, Dan Bowman, Tim Bowman, Tom Bowman, Joe Page, and Bob Fletcher. Honorary pallbearers will be sons-in-law: Rev. Andrew Heil, Brandon Hubbard-Heitz.
Due to Covid-19 please bring and wear a facemask, also practice social distancing for the safety of the family and those attending.
Online condolences, photos and memories may be shared with the Bowman family at www.ledfordfuneralhomes.com
Robert Ledford Funeral Home, 720 Ohio Avenue, Erwin, is privileged to serve the Bowman family. (423) 743-1380.