John Eustace ‘Buddy’ Bowen

John Eustace “Buddy” Bowen, 91, of Blackshear, passed away Tuesday, April 6, 2021, at Memorial Satilla Health in Waycross, following an extended illness.

Born March 14, 1930 in Waycross, he was a son of the late John Samuel and Mamie Youmans Bowen. He graduated from Wacona High School in 1947 and drove the school bus for a couple of years. He enlisted in the Georgia National Guard in 1948 and served for 26 years retiring with the rank of Major.   

He also worked for CSX Transportation in Waycross, beginning as a machinist apprentice and through years of faithful service to the company, he was promoted to Supervisor of Quality Control and traveled the eastern coastline offering assistance where needed.

He married Jean Crawford of Waycross April 15, 1950 and was a devoted husband; loving father, grandfather and great grandfather and a Christian friend to all.

He was an active member of First Baptist Church in Blackshear, attended the Enriched Sunday School Class, was active in the JOY Group and had been a church bus driver for many trips.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by all of his brothers and two sisters-in-law, Sam Bowen, Royce (Waunell) Bowen, Eugene (Geneva) Bowen and Coye Bowen.

Survivors include his wife of 71 years, Jean Crawford Bowen, Blackshear; two daughters and sons-in-law, Debbie and Leon Cochran, St. Marys and Diane and Eddie Bennett, Mershon; grandchildren, Dr. JoAnna Picard (husband Brett), St. Marys, Jody Cochran (wife Heather), Waverly and Dr. Leslie Dowling (husband David) and Jim Bennett (wife Marilyn), both of Mershon; great-grandchildren, Austin Cochran, Anniston Cochran, Caleb Picard, Gabby Picard, Drake Dowling, Caroline Dowling, Landri Bennett, Chandler Bennett and Parker Bennett; sister and brother-in-law, Dale and Joe Lee, Jacksonville, FL; sisters-in-law, Sue S. Bowen, Waycross and Shelba M. Bowen, Alma and several special nieces, nephews, and other relatives.

Visitation will be from 1-2 p.m. Friday, April 9, at First Baptist Church.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Friday, April 9, from the First Baptist Church in Blackshear with the Rev. Eric Rentz and the Rev. Dr. Bill Young officiating.  

Interment will follow in the Waters Cemetery.

The family requests all members of the First Baptist Church Enriched Sunday School Class and The 70s Supper Club to serve as honorary pallbearers. Please be at the church by 1:40 p.m. on Friday.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Blackshear First Baptist Church, 670 Main Street, Blackshear, GA 31516 or to a favorite charity of your choice.

Sympathy may be expressed by signing online at

Hart Funeral Home of Blackshear is in charge of arrangements.

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