|Birth: ||Nov. 16, 1919|
|Death: ||Jul. 17, 2008|
Ocala - Mr. Hammett L. Bowen, Sr., 88, passed away in Ocala on July 17, 2008. He was born November 16, 1919 in LaGrange, Georgia. He is a retired driver for an oil company. He worked and participated with the Boy Scouts for 27 years. He was a member of St. Marks Methodist Church in Ocala. He moved into the area in 1957 from LaGrange, Georgia. He is survived by his son Keith O. Bowen, Sr. and wife Dolores of Ocala. Another son Andy Bradley and wife Carolyn of Mayo. A granddaughter Angela Michelle Williams, a great granddaughter Shannon Leigh William. Two grandsons Keith Bowen, Jr., and Kevin L. Bowen. He was predeceased by his loving wife Dorothy of 25 years and a son Hammett Jr. A gathering of friends will be Monday July 21st, at ROBERTS DOWNTOWN CHAPEL 606 SW 2nd Ave., Ocala, Fl, from 1:00 - 2:00 PM with services to follow. Graveside services will follow on Tuesday in LaGrange, GA. In lieu of flowers send donations to the Ocala/Marion County Veterans Memorial Park. Published in the Ocala Star-Banner from 7/19/2008 - 7/20/2008
Community gathers 1 p.m. Monday to remember veteran, local icon By Joe VanHoose Ocala Star-Banner
Published: Monday, July 21, 2008 at 6:30 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, July 21, 2008 at 5:46 a.m.
OCALA — When Hammett Bowen Jr. Elementary School opened two years ago, military and veteran groups took center stage. But there was a man working behind the scenes, collecting an endless number of signatures and quietly urging the Marion County School Board to name the new school after the only Marion County native to receive the Medal of Honor.
"He was very much a part of the effort, though he didn't always play the visual part," said School Board spokesman Kevin Christian on Sunday. "We saw it as a good opportunity for a generation that didn't know who Hammett Bowen Jr. was, but he had an impact on us.
"His dad is a big part of that name."
Bowen, a World War II Army veteran, longtime Ocala resident and patriarch of four generations, died Thursday. He was 88.
Today at 1 p.m. (July 21, 2008), friends and family will pay their last respects to the LaGrange, Ga., native at the Roberts Funeral Home Downtown Chapel. Among those in attendance will be several fellow veterans with whom he helped build the Marion County Veterans Memorial Park. "That was one of his biggest things, to get that going, and it turned out real well," said Bowen's son, Keith. "Before he passed away, he wanted to make sure all of the donations go to the park."
After serving in World War II and earning a Purple Heart for combat in Italy, the senior Bowen came to Ocala from Georgia in 1957. Working for Marion Petroleum, he drove a fuel truck that would supply many Marion County gas stations.
He also became heavily involved in the Boy Scouts, starting as a scout leader at St. Marks Methodist Church and ending up on the district level.
"That was something he really loved to do, and he was in there for about 27 years," Keith Bowen said. "He has a lot of plaques on his wall that he was awarded from there."
Many of those whose lives Bowen touched will be at the service today, said his son. So will Tommy Needham, Bowen's old friend and partner in creating the veteran's park.
Needham remembers Bowen as a solid man who lived by his principles every day.
"He was quiet, didn't have a lot to say, but when he talked, you listened," Needham said. "He worked hard at everything he did. He was a mighty fine man."
A fine man his son says no one ever had a bad word for; a true giver who gave a lot to his community.
"He would give you the shirt off his back if you asked," Bowen said. "He was a true southern gentleman. I mean, he exemplified that.
"Anything he could do to help you, that's what he would do."
Joe VanHoose may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 867-4124.
Dorothy Bowen (1923 - 1974)*
Constance Bennett Kendrick Bowen (1932 - 1987)*
Hammett Lee Bowen (1947 - 1969)*
Restlawn Memory Gardens
Created by: No Guts, No Glory
Record added: Jul 19, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 28381863