Bowles, Dr. James Alfred, PhD
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Dr. James Alfred Bowles, PhD, most recently residing in Arvada, Colorado, passed away Monday, December 3, 2012. A memorial service is scheduled for Saturday, December 15, 2012, at 1 pm at Wide Horizon, 8900 West 38th Ave, Wheat Ridge, Colorado.
Dr. Bowles ("Doc" or "Jim") devoted his entire life to serving and enriching others through his family, friends, church and profession.
He was born in 1931, in Arvada, Colorado, to Alfred B. and Francis K. Bowles. Jim grew up in a log cabin on a ranch near Phippsburg and a home in Wheat Ridge, with his sister Virginia and his brother Bob. He graduated from Wheat Ridge High School and Colorado State University, majoring in Animal Husbandry and Agronomy.
He met the love of his life, Mary Owen Hitch, while skiing at Arapaho Basin and they were married in 1954. Jim and Mary had six children and raised them in Wyoming and on a farm near Polonia, Wisconsin.
After college, Jim served in the Air Force as a first lieutenant and was stationed in Korea. Jim then worked for the USDA Soil Conservation Service for 7 years as a Soil Scientist while living in Basin and Worland, Wyoming. He then obtained his Doctorate at the University of Wyoming in Laramie in 1967.
He was hired as a Professor at the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point in what became the College of Natural Resources. He served an initial three year term as Acting Chairman, and continued teaching until his retirement in 1990.
Jim loved advising and counseling his students and Christian Science college organization members, coaching and travelling with his nationally competitive Soil Science student team, taking students on an annual range management road trip to Wyoming, and traveling to Poland, Germany and Yugoslavia as part of the University's international programs.
Jim and Mary lived on their Wisconsin farm until 2003, when they moved back to Colorado. He loved his woods, pastures, gardens, raising cattle, the annual Christmas carol sing for neighbors and friends, and deer hunting with his children. Jim felt the farm was an ecological treasure with its abundant variety of ecosystems. He was so grateful that the farm has been put into the Northern Wisconsin Conservancy and will be forever preserved.
After retiring, Jim volunteered at the Arvada Center and also drove a bus for the elderly and Meals On Wheels. Jim was always most comfortable with "common folks". He was generous and he really cared about people, taking the time to talk to people and find out about them. He made everyone feel important.
Jim's passions included his extended family, church, opera, Mozart, birding, grasses and his four lady goats. He taught and modeled conservation to his family and friends throughout his life. He was passionate about leaving a small footprint on the land. Jim also loved camping, tennis, dancing, playing cards, telling stories, traveling and skiing.
Jim is survived by his wife Mary; their children Jim, Virginia, John, Ed and Deb (their youngest daughter, Cathy, passed on in 1992); his brother Bob; and 12 grandchildren.
Published in Stevens Point Journal on Dec. 8, 2012