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Robert Leroy Bowman


1930 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Robert Leroy Bowman Obituary
Robert Leroy Bowman
May 10, 1930 - January 27, 2017
Resident of San Jose
Bob was born in humble beginnings in Laytonville, CA by parents John Bowman and Olive Bowman. One of the original pioneering families in Mendocino, his great grandparents settled along the Eel River.
Bob moved to San Jose to attend Lincoln High School in 1946, where he met his life-long love, Joyce Call. He was an avid athlete, excelling in basketball, football and baseball.
Baseball became his calling while at Napa Junior College. He was unexpectedly drafted to the Klamath Falls, OR Triple A team, when he accompanied a buddy who was trying out.
Bob and Joyce wed in 1950. Shortly thereafter Bob was drafted to the Philadelphia Phillies to play right field. With 6 pitching appearances as a position player, he holds a couple Major League records. Bob and Joyce traveled extensively for baseball to places like Caracas, Venezuela for Summer Ball. Son, Bradley, was born and became part of Bob's entourage.
Bob and Joyce returned to San Jose (Cambrian area), retiring from Major League baseball, adding Sheridan and Jacqueline to their family. Bob became Sales Manager at Joseph George Distributing, where he worked for 31 years. Both Bob and Joyce were avid volunteers in the community, with Lucille Salter Packard Stanford Children's Hospital San Jose Auxiliary (Thrift Box on Lincoln Ave) and Camden High Booster Club.
Bob was an extremely talented handyman and helped build his cabin home next to his high school friends, the Myers family, in Lake Almanor Country Club. There the two families (6 kids total) enjoyed year round activities in the outdoors and made wonderful memories together.
Bob and Joyce entertained tirelessly, stressing the importance of having family over on Sundays and friends flowing through the front door endlessly. He was known for his grilling abilities, as well as cocktail mixes and laughter. He told a good joke and was always classy and caring toward others. They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary at Lou's Village surrounded by life long friends and family.
Retiring from Joseph George in 1990, Bob and Joyce built a new home at Lake Almanor. They became very active for the volunteer fire fighters' "Fire Sirens" Thrift Shop in the Country Club. Kids and grandkids visited often, playing tennis, golf, waterskiing, attending "Family Nights" and cementing more life long friendships. Bob was a great fisherman and golfer. They remained there until Joyce died in 2004. He moved shortly thereafter to The Villages in San Jose, with his furry companion, Russell. He continued to play golf and make new friends in his bridge group. His kids loved having him close by, celebrating birthdays with lively bocce ball games at The Villages.
Bob was a gentle giant who was loved by all. Hes survived by his son, Bradley (Diana), daughters Sheridan and Jacqueline & grandkids Daniel, Andrew (Michelle), Ryan, Lindsay, Micheal (Sarah) and Steven.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations in his memory to Lucile Salter Packard Children's Hospital. As Bob wished, there is no service, however we're planning an event in the Spring to honor his wonderful life.


View the online memorial for Robert Leroy Bowman
Published in San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on Jan. 31, 2017
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