The Duncan Banner

January 21, 2013

Donald George Dowhower

Dec. 26, 1929 — Jan. 17, 2013


The Duncan Banner

MARLOW — Donald George Dowhower, much loved husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather, died peacefully Thursday morning, Jan. 17, in his home in Marlow at the age of 83.

Visitation will be Monday, Jan. 21 at Assumption Catholic Church from 6-9 p.m. starting with a wake service at 6 p.m. and concluding with a rosary at 8:30 p.m.

Funeral service will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 22, also at Assumption Catholic Church. Grandsons will be pallbearers and Knights of Columbus will be honorary pallbearers. Granddaughters will be gift bearers.

Don was born to Elmer and Alice Dowhower Dec. 26, 1929, in North Platte, Neb. Five older brothers and two younger sisters enriched his life with innumerable experiences, as well as leading him on varied and sometimes risky adventures. They taught him to swim, hunt, fish and ice skate on the frigid deep sand pits.

He earned his spending money getting up early every morning to deliver newspapers on his bike, regardless of the weather. As a reward, he could go see all of the Saturday Westerns or comedies at the local movie theater. His avid love of football was rooted in Nebraska, and though other universities were sometimes second-runner-up, Nebraska U remained dearest to his heart.

After graduating from North Platte High School in 1948, he joined the U.S. Air Force at age 18. He was stationed at Sheppard Air Force Base in Wichita Falls, Texas, when he met Cecelia Evans, who became his wife Jan. 15, 1951.

After his service, he enrolled at Kearney State College in Nebraska and, upon graduation, he signed on as a math and science teacher for Sargent High School in the middle of the Nebraska Sand Hills.

In 1960, he took a teaching job in Duncan. Later, he became an assistant principal and retired in July 1990 as principal of Duncan Junior High.

He was a devoted husband and loving father of eight children and their spouses: Ron and Ivette Dowhower of Metairie, La.; Steve and Sherri Dowhower of Vernon, Texas; Beth Honan Fischer of Independence, Kan.; Matt and Kim Dowhower of Shawnee; Mary Pruitt and Lee Harris; Loretta and Mark Suttle; Leslie and Dennis Bruns; Sandy and Bill Jennings, all from the Duncan area.

Don loved his family and was especially proud of all of them, including his 21 grandchildren: Melissa Gregory and family, Joshua Suttle and family, Dr. Jeff Pruitt and family, Alissa Amons, Monica Dowhower, Joseph Suttle and family, Michael Dowhower and wife, Kevin Honan and wife, Christopher Bruns, Jannette Honan, Rachel Dowhower and family, Jonathon Suttle, Cody Bruns, Theodore Honan, Whitney Jennings, Andrew Dowhower, Bryce Dowhower, Kaylee Jennings, Sheridan Dowhower, Cassidy Dowhower, and Anna Dowhower.

He was loved as a grandfather by Jordan Guerrero, and Kaitlynne and Kaden Turnbull. He also had nine great-grandchildren and two step-grandchildren.

Other survivors include brothers Lloyd, Dennis and wife Beverly, and Virgil Dowhower; sister Florence Ziarko; in-laws Jean Dowhower, Betty Dowhower, Kenneth and Frances Evans Jackson, Donald and Julia Evans Raby, Patricia Evans Heacock, Mary Evans Royer, and many nieces, nephews and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his youngest sister, Violet Grim; brothers Raymond and Albert Dowhower; brother-in-law John Ziarko; sisters-in-law Erma Dowhower and Madonna Dowhower; nieces Judy Phillips, Debbie  Faulkner, and Janet Ellen Jackson; and nephews John Paul Douglas, Jerry Grim, Chris Raby and Arleigh Heacock.

Don was a person of faith and integrity. During his childhood, through the nurturing of his parents, especially his mother, was planted the values of good citizenship. He joined the Catholic Church Jan. 13, 1951, and remained a faithful, practicing Christian.

Online condolences can be sent to the family at www.granthamfuneralhomes.com.