HARTSVILLE, S.C. -Rev. Paul LeRoy Sowell, 84, passed away Nov. 10, 2012.
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Mr. Sowell was born in McBee, a son of the late Purdy and Etta Melton Sowell.
He was a member of the John Dusenberry Marine Corps League where he was past Chaplain. He received the Order of the Purple Heart three times, was a member of the McBee Masonic Lodge and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He served his country in the Marine Corps having entered at the age of 16 and served during the Korean War. He guarded President Truman at The Little White House in Key West, Fla. He spent three years in China where his unit help Chiang Kai Check from China to Formosa. He was an Underwater Demolition Expert in Quantico, VA. He had right to work with the Atomic Bomb. Due to his injuries he was given a five year temporary retirement and then he received a complete medical discharge.
He graduated from Carolina College of Commerce, a graduate of Fruitland Bible Institute in Hendersonville and then completed his college education at Gardner Webb College. He was a member of the Chosen Few. He was wounded three times in the Chosin Reservoir. He was a 100% disabled Veteran. He was a vocational pastor and worked at several jobs in Darlington and Chesterfield Counties, while pasturing churches. He was pastor of High Hill Baptist Church, Darlington, Faith Baptist Church, Darlington, Beauford Baptist Church, McBee and Fourth Street Baptist Church in Hartsville. He was a family man, who dearly loved his wife, daughter, son-in-law and grandson, but most of all he loved the Lord. He loved to work his garden, work on the house and play with his dogs and cats. He will be greatly missed by his family, his church family and friends.
Surviving are his wife, Iva Lovelace Sowell, Hartsville; one daughter, Paula Sowell (Hoby) Grooms, Moncks Corner; and one grandson, Curt Grooms, Gastonia.
He was preceded in death by seven brothers, Frank, Leonard, James, Robert, Edgar, Heyward and Kenneth Sowell and three sisters, Sara Sowell, Lois Williams and Clara Mae Cassidy.
Funeral services: Tuesday at 2 p.m. at the McBee Baptist Church.
Burial: McBee Cemetery
Funeral home: Norton Funeral Home.
Visitation: Monday from 5 to 7 p.m. at the funeral home.
Published in Shelby Star on Nov. 12, 2012