John Bower

John David Bower, 100, McLouth, died June 18, 2012, at his home.

He was born Dec. 17, 1911, in rural McLouth, the son of David Earl and Mabel Estella Kimmel Bower.

John David Bower

John David Bower

A lifelong resident of McLouth, he was a 1929 graduate of McLouth High School and earned a bachelor of arts degree from McPherson College in 1938.

He was a U.S. Army veteran, serving from 1942 to 1943.

He was a farmer and conservation contractor north of McLouth most of his life. he served as the pastor of the Church of the Brethren in McLouth for many years.

He was a State Representative for the 47th district in the Kansas Legislature, representing Jefferson County and surrounding communities for 24 years. Serving for 12 terms, he was a leader in the fields of education, water resources, and human rights, and he led the opposition to liquor and gambling in Kansas for 24 years.

He was a member and longtime Deacon of the McLouth First Baptist Church, the McLouth Kiwanis Club, the Senior Citizens Friendship Club, the Jefferson County Historical Society, the Kansas State Historical Society, and the Heart of America Antique Steam Engine and Model Association.

He married Maude Agnes Black June 13, 1936, at McLouth. She preceded him in death Feb. 10, 1988. He married Mary Frances Lacy Kimmel Feb. 25, 1989, at McLouth. She died July 23, 2009.

He is survived by one son, Ronald Bower, Wilsonville, Ore.; a daughter, Ruth Edmonds, McLouth; a step-son, Robert Kimmel, McLouth; two stepdaughters, Patricia Kimmel and Judy Miller, both Lawrence; 10 grandchildren; 16 great-grandchildren; and 10 great-great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by two brothers, Donald K. Bower and Gordon Bower.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Monday, June 25, at the McLouth First Baptist Church. Burial will be at McLouth Cemetery. Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m. Monday prior to services at the church.

Memorials can be made to the McLouth First Baptist Church and sent in care of the Barnett Family Funeral Home, P.O. Box 602, Oskaloosa, 66066.

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