Lester Eugene Bowers, 84, of Kirksville, Missouri, passed away Sunday (December 11, 2011) at Kirksville Manor Care Center.
The son of Ora Edward and Ethel Mahalia (Holt) Bowers, he was born September 17, 1927 in rural Adair County, Missouri. Les attended the Adair County Schools and Kirksville public schools, graduating from Kirksville High School with the Class of 1945. After graduating, Les enlisted into the United States Navy. He was honorably discharged on July 30, 1946, receiving the rank of seaman second class. Lester then attended and graduated from the Montgomery-Taylor School of Watch making in Poplar Bluff, Missouri.
On November 11, 1948 at Zion Lutheran Church, in Poplar Bluff, Missouri, Lester was united in marriage to Sylvia Kathleen Snyder and to this union three sons were born, Mike, Mark and Brent.
Lester was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Sylvia in 1992; one son, Mark DeWayne Bowers in 1995 and one brother, John “Wayne” Bowers in 2009.
Lester is survived by son, Mike Bowers and wife Sarah of Kirksville, MO, two grandsons and their families, Christopher and Nayelli Bowers, great-granddaughters, Amira and Alexa Bowers of Overland Park, KS; Jason and Tiffany Bowers, great-grandsons, Drake and Brayten Bowers of Prairie Village, KS; son, Brent Bowers of St. Louis, MO, two grandchildren, Jared Bowers of St. Charles, MO and Tamara Bowers of St. Louis, MO; one brother, Orville Bowers of Kirksville, MO; one sister, Deloris Cooley and husband, Elmo of Las Vegas, NV, as well as several uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews. He is also survived by Brenda Sewell and his many friends from the Uptown Café, where he was treated as family.
After completion of watch making training, Lester returned to Kirksville and worked in Unionville as a watch and jewelry repairman. Later he was employed by Gardner Collier Jewelry Store in Kirksville. After working at Gardner Collier Jewelry Store for a number of years, Lester purchased Bradley Cab Company. He managed the cab company and also worked as a driver, he enjoyed this work with the public and in assisting customers. During this time he was also studying to be an electrician. He then started Bowers’ Electric Company wiring both residential and commercial locations in the Kirksville area. In 1981 he became the electrical inspector and later the building inspector for the City of Kirksville. During this tenure he attended many workshops and training opportunities such as traffic signal maintenance, nuclear testing equipment, and arson investigation. He was recognized as Employee of the Month in July 1984.
After Lester’s retirement from the City of Kirksville, January 1, 1996, he devoted his time to many hobbies. He was especially proud of the grandfather clocks and many other clocks he built. Lester also enjoyed fishing, hunting with his metal detector and reading about the Civil War.
Lester was a member of the First Lutheran Church where he served as an Elder and Sunday school teacher. He was also a member of V.F.W. Post 2508.
Graveside service with military rites will be held 2:00 p.m. Friday (December 16, 2011) at Maple Hills Cemetery in Kirksville, with Chaplain Carol Davenport presiding. Family will receive friends one hour before the graveside service in the chapel of Travis-Noe Funeral Home in Kirksville.
Expressions of sympathy in memory of Lester may be made to Hospice of Northeast Missouri or to Kirksville Manor Care Center. Memorials may be left at or mailed to Travis-Noe Funeral Home, P.O. Box 306, Kirksville, MO 63501.