Ronald E. Bower and Anita P. Bower

Published 8:23 am Tuesday, September 2, 2014

SWANSBORO – Ronald Eugene Bower, 80, died Tuesday, August 26, 2014 in his home. His wife, Anita Parker Bower, 81, followed him a short time later on Friday, August 29.  Their family believes that Ron, Anita’s caregiver in her fight against cancer, left just ahead to better prepare their heavenly home.

Mr. Bower was born in Kalamazoo, MI on September 5, 1933 and was the son of the late Clarence and Lucy Cox Bower. A retired Baptist minister and a graduate of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and Fruitland Baptist Bible Institute, he had pastored Oak Grove, Macedonia, and Avalon Baptist Churches, and the Rocky Mount Christian Ministry Center. A member of First Baptist Church of Swansboro, he was formerly a member and deacon of Englewood Baptist Church in Rocky Mount.  While living in Rocky Mount he also owned and operated Residential Real Estate Appraisal Service.  A Navy veteran of the Korean War, he served for four years as a Hospital Corpsman.

Mrs. Bower was born in Gates County on May 19, 1933 and was the daughter of the late Orion and Mildred Harrell Parker.  A graduate of the King’s Daughter’s Hospital School of Nursing, she worked for 20 years at both New Hanover Memorial and Margaret Pardee Hospitals where she helped open mental health facilities and establish nursing regulations and by-laws, and later retired after 25 years as a nursing supervisor with Nash General Hospital.  A member of First Baptist Church of Swansboro, and a former member of Englewood Baptist Church and its Primetimers, her professional affiliations included service as Vice-President of the Hospital Retirees Association.

Mr. and Mrs. Bower were married in August of 1954 and together are survived by their children, Melanie Ronita Bower of Nashville and Michael Ryan Bower of Rocky Mount; two grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Also surviving are Mr. Bower’s brother, Lawrence Bower of Kalamazoo; and Mrs. Bower’s brothers, Clayton and James Parker, both of Virginia Beach.

A joint graveside service will be held Saturday, September 6, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. on the family plot at Cool Spring Baptist Church Cemetery, Eure, NC, by the Rev. Roger Kiker.  Friends may join the family in the social hall of the church immediately following the service.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in their memory may be made to Cool Spring Baptist Church, in care of Merv Bauerle, 460 US Hwy 13 South, Eure, NC  27935.

Miller Funeral Home & Crematory, 304 Main Street, Gatesville, is assisting the family with arrangements.

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