Alva Review-Courier -



January 9, 2019

Donald Wayne Bowman was called home to Jesus on Friday, January 4, 2019.

Don was born January 25, 1961, to Harold and Barbara Bowman at Rocky Mountain Hospital in Denver, Colorado. When Don was three, his family moved to Medford and it became his home. Early in high school Don met the love of his life, Lori Blubaugh. In 1979 Don graduated from Medford High School.

On August 14, 1982, Don and Lori were married in Medford. To this union two children were born, Heather in 1985 and Tanner in 1996. In the 1980s Don was employed by the Medford Co-op while Lori finished her degree in elementary education. Don was an active member of the Oklahoma Jaycees and served as the Oklahoma state president from 1990-1991. In 1991, he was named among the top presidents in the nation.

Don graduated from Northwestern Oklahoma State University (NWOSU) in 1993 with a bachelor's degree in business administration. In May 1994, he earned a second bachelor's degree in accounting from NWOSU. After completing his degree, Don took the certified public accountant exam and became part of the very small percentage of people to pass on their first attempt.

During the 1990s Don was employed at First National Bank of Medford where he was a loan officer. While working at the bank, he also started his own business, Grant County Accounting, with an office in downtown Medford. He was asked to take the insurance agent licensing exam to gauge the difficulty, and scored so high he was recruited to change careers. As a licensed insurance agent he was employed by Grant County Farm Bureau, Banker's Life and later Aflac.

In March of 1996 Don was appointed to the Medford City Council. In October 1996 he was appointed as the Mayor of the City of Medford, a position he held until April 2011 when his term expired. Don chose not to continue as mayor because he had been employed by the City of Cherokee in June 2009 and had been commuting daily. Don and Lori made Cherokee their home in May 2011. Don served as the City Manager for the City of Cherokee until November 2018.

Don's true calling and passion in life was to help kids. Don and Lori were very active in youth programs in Medford and through their church. They began a children's ministry program, "Bible Champs," that is still active today. Don also served as the youth pastor at the First Baptist Church in Medford for numerous years. Don could often be found coaching his children's youth sports teams and also teams without his own children. As Heather and Tanner grew older, Don's role shifted to "team feeder." He loved to host team meals in his home for their teams; he even converted a bedroom in his home to a large pantry to store team meal supplies. Some of Don's greatest pride and joy came from watching Heather play in two basketball state tournaments and watching Tanner win seven state championships in football and track. Don also loved to spoil his two grandchildren, Raegan and Eden, who lovingly referred to him as "Papa."

Don was a board member for Main Street Cherokee and a member of the Oklahoma Municipal League and the First Baptist Church of Medford.

Those who preceded him in death are his wife of 29 years, Lori, in 2011; mother-in-law LaVon Blubaugh; grandparents Floyd and Doris Deans, Marion and Helen O'Bleness, and William and Laura Bowman.

Don is survived by daughter Heather Gottsch and husband Aaron, and son Tanner Bowman and fiancée Baylee Sharp, all of Cherokee; grandchildren Raegan and Eden Gottsch of Cherokee; three boys who he loved as his own, Shane Thompson and wife Carissa of Oklahoma City, Duane Thompson and wife Olyvia of Medford and Kenny Thompson of Edmond; mother Barbara Bowman of Medford; brothers Mickey Bowman of Medford and Roger Bowman and wife Colleen of Enid; sister Kathy Hern of Nevada; father-in-law Don Blubaugh of Wakita; brother-in-law Jay Blubaugh and wife Karen of Medford; aunts and uncles Jim and Neva Cook, Dwaine and Marian Smith, Charles Deans, Louise Baker, Shirley Mos, and Arthur Bowman; nieces and nephews Samantha Lemieux and husband Kaleb, Shelby, Chloe and Claire Blubaugh, Eric Miller and wife Candas, Jamie Willis and husband Taurean, Jessie, Laci, and Chad Hern; many great-nieces and nephews, cousins and other relatives and many friends.

Celebration of life service for Donald Bowman will be Monday, January 14, 2019, at 2 p.m. at the Medford Public School Auditorium with burial to follow at Rosemound Cemetery under the direction of Lanman Funeral Home. Visitation with the family will be Wednesday, January 9, 2019, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Lanman Funeral Home in Cherokee and Thursday, January 10, 2019, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Lanman Funeral Home in Medford. Online condolences may be made at

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Lori Bowman Memorial Scholarship Fund, through the funeral home.


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