Carl William Bowdon
February 4, 1936 – April 24, 2023
Carl Bowdon left our lives to join his ancestors on April 24, 2023 at 87 years old, in Patagonia, Arizona.
Well known in the area, he spent most of his life in southern Arizona. A loving husband, parent, grandfather, uncle, friend, mentor, teacher, story teller, music lover, pet owner and good Christian man, he was greatly loved and will be missed.
Part of Arizona history, Carl was born in 1936 to Benjamin B. Bowdon (BB) and Charlotte (Ernst) Bowdon at the big, state-of-the art hospital in the bustling frontier town of Jerome, Arizona.
He spent his youth having fun around Route 66 and the Williams area, graduated from Williams High School, attended Arizona State College (now NAU), married his high school sweetheart, had two children, served in the Navy Reserves, taught woodworking in California and then moved his family to Patagonia in 1967.
Patagonia families knew him as the woodworking and industrial arts teacher at Patagonia Union High School (PUHS), where he also taught drafting, helped many learn how to be safe drivers and became a member of the Sigma chapter of Epsilon Pi Tau (International Honorary and Professional Fraternity in Industrial Arts and Industrial Vocational Education).
He earned his Master’s in Education at the University of Arizona, then became the Principal at PUHS, before he found a new place in the community as a service and safety technician for cooling, heating, home appliances and an electrical contractor.
He will be remembered as a founding member of the String Benders musical group that traveled southern Arizona (as their lead banjo player), a member of the Rotary Club who could always be found flipping pancakes at their annual fundraiser, a 4-H parent, an enthusiastic member of the Patagonia Volunteer Fire & Rescue, Patagonia Ts&As Car Club member and annual volunteer at the Fire Department Steak Fry, a helpful member of the Patagonia Community Church, an active member of the Masonic Lodge in Nogales and a fixer of things, from a broken toy to a broken heart.
He is survived by his wife Carrie Bowdon of Tucson and her family, daughter Rani Jele (Scott), daughter-in-law Denise Bowdon (Brent-deceased), nephew Bruce VanDerslice (Jackie), niece Nola Harr, six grandchildren, extended family and many friends around Arizona.
Friends and family are invited to attend his celebration of life, which will be at the Patagonia Community Church on October 28, 2023 at noon. In lieu of flowers, your donation to the Bowdon Memorial Scholarship Fund at Los Charros Foundation, PO Box 32816 in Tucson, AZ 85751 would be appreciated. (This fund was initially started in memory of Carl’s son Brent.)