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Fred Kowkabany


1929 - 2019 Obituary Condolences
Fred Kowkabany Obituary
KOWKABANY
On May 14, 2019, we lost Fred Kowkabany, a beloved husband and father, a brilliant mathematician and devout follower of Jesus Christ. Fred was born in 1929 at St. Vincent's Hospital (Springfield), attended Boys' State in 1946, and graduated from Andrew Jackson High School with honors in 1948.
He attended the University of Florida, where he was a member of the Phi Eta Sigma, Phi Kappa Phi and Phi Beta Kappa honor societies, and graduated with very high honors with a degree in Mathematics in 1952. It was during this time that he became friends with Dr. Wilton Kane, who would become a much-cherished lifelong friend. During the Korea conflict, Fred served in the U.S. Army's Finance Office, where he developed another lifelong friendship with Charles Corey.
In 1955, Fred began work at the Prudential Life Insurance Company's home office in Jacksonville, where he would work for the next 37 years, retiring as the General Manager of Life Underwriting in 1992. It was at Prudential that Fred would meet the love of his life, Jeannette (Pruitt) Kowkabany, and they were married in September 1958. While working at Prudential, Fred earned his Fellow Life Management Institute designation and spent countless hours volunteering to work with non-profit and civic groups, including the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce and Junior Achievement.
After retiring in 1990, he greatly increased his volunteer service to include serving on the board of Harbor House and served as a mediator for 20 years for the State's Attorney's office. He also developed a specialty course in personal finances that he taught to drug offenders to help them learn how to manage their funds and lead a successful life making a legal living.
Since 1971, he and his beloved wife, Jeannette, have been members of San Jose Catholic Church, where Fred has served as an Usher and Greeter for the past twenty years. He fiercely loved all of his family – his wife, his sons and their wives and children, and his brothers, nephews, cousins and in-laws. Well-known for his razor-sharp wit, Fred truly enjoyed meeting new people and took annual vacations to Daytona Beach. He stayed active in Prudential's Retirement group, went to the gym three days a week, enjoyed weekly time reading at the library and active social life. In 2018, Fred and Jeannette celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary, a true testament to the love and devotion found in a marriage between two best friends.
Over the past two years, Fred's health began to slowly ebb, until he experienced a quick decline over the past month. During all this time, Jeannette attended to his every need, only requiring the help of Hospice during his last two weeks. In keeping with his strong will, he fought to spend his last few days saying goodbye to his beloved wife, to all of his sons and his dearest brother, Mitchell, and to his close friends. His last wish was to be able to leave this earth in his own home, which the Lord graciously granted as he gently slipped into the waiting arms of the Creator God he so dearly loved and served.
Fred was predeceased by his parents Norman and Mary Kowkabany, and his brothers Edward, George, and Jack. He is survived by his wife, Jeannette, his brother Mitchell (Rosemarie), his four sons – Michael (Jennifer Southall), Paul (Isabelle), David (Laura) and Stephen (Jennifer), four grandchildren – Tonya Kowkabany, Liam Kowkabany, Daphne Kowkabany and Gavin Kowkabany, two great-grandchildren, Hunter Brown and Blake Brown, four nephews, three nieces, and numerous cousins and friends.
A vigil service will be held at Corey-Kerlin Funeral Home at 940 Cesery Boulevard on Friday evening. The family will receive visitors at 7:00 p.m. and the vigil service will begin at 7:30 p.m The funeral mass will be celebrated at San Jose Catholic Church, 3619 Toledo Road on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. with Reverend Rodolfo Godinez as the Celebrant. Pallbearers will be his nephews and cousins. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions be made to L'Arche of Jacksonville, 700 Arlington Road, Jacksonville, FL 32211.
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Published in the Florida Times-Union from May 15 to May 17, 2019
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