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Obituary: Carl Bowdon

Carl Bowdon left our lives to join his ancestors on April 24, 2023 at 87 years old, in Patagonia, Arizona. Well known in the area, he spent most of his life in southern Arizona. A loving husband, parent, grandfather, uncle, friend, mentor, teacher, story teller, music lover, pet owner and good Christian man, he was greatly loved and will be missed.

Part of Arizona history, Carl was born in 1936 to Benjamin B. Bowdon (BB) and Charlotte (Ernst) Bowdon at the big, state-of-the art hospital in the bustling frontier town of Jerome, Arizona. He spent his youth having fun around Route 66 and the Williams area, graduated from Williams High School, attended Arizona State College (now NAU), married his high school sweetheart, had two children, served in the Navy Reserves, sold his hardware business in Williams, taught woodworking in California and then moved his family to Patagonia in 1967.

He is survived by his wife Carrie Bowdon of Tucson and her family, daughter Rani Jele (Scott), daughter-in-law Denise Bowdon (Brent-deceased), nephew Bruce VanDerslice (Jackie), niece Nola Harr, 6 grandchildren, his relatives in northern Arizona, extended family and many friends.

A founding member of the String Benders musical group that traveled southern Arizona, he will be remembered as their lead banjo player, a member of the Rotary Club who could always be found flipping pancakes at their annual fundraiser, a 4-H parent, an enthusiastic member of the Patagonia Ts&As Car Club, Patagonia fire department member and annual volunteer at the July 4th Steak Fry, a helpful member of the Patagonia Community Church, an active member of the Masonic Lodge in Nogales and a fixer of things, from a broken toy to a broken heart.

Friends and family are invited to attend his celebration of life, which will be at the Patagonia Community Church this autumn. In lieu of flowers, your donation to the Bowdon Memorial Scholarship Fund at Los Charros Foundation, PO Box 32816 in Tucson, AZ 85751 would be appreciated. This fund was initially started in memory of Carl’s son Brent.

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