J. W. McDowell
February 28, 1930 - December 24, 2013
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J. W. McDowell, 83, of 137 Grovania Road, passed away peacefully at his home surrounded by his loving family on Tuesday, December 24, 2013, after a lengthy illness. Visitation will be Friday, December 27, 2013, from 5:00 until 8:00 p.m. at Watson-Hunt Funeral Home in Perry. A Celebration of His Life will be held on Saturday, December 28, 2013, at 11:00 a.m. at Haynesville Baptist Church. Reverend David Fisher, Reverend Steve Womack, and Charlie Walker will officiate. Interment will be in Woodlawn Cemetery immediately following the service.
Mr. McDowell was born on February 28, 1930, to Walter C. and Henrietta Bell McDowell. He was retired from the Georgia Department of Transportation after 28 years of dedicated service. He loved his Lord and Savior and was a member of First Assembly of God Church in Byron. Mr. McDowell, affectionately known to many as the "Sweet Man" for his many years of volunteering and delivering surplus bread, cakes, and pies to Loaves and Fishes, Salvation Army, Macon Rescue Mission, and The Grace House. He would then share with so many friends and family in surrounding communities when all the charities were full. He genuinely loved to see the smiles on their faces, especially the children, when he pulled in the driveways of many with goodies stacked so high in his little car that he could hardly see how to drive. He was a loving, caring, and giving man, as he would always want to give "a little piece of money", as he called it, to anyone who helped him do anything.
Mr. McDowell met the love of his life, Evelyn Plemmons, in 1950 in Grovania, Georgia, and he "courted" her with many trips to Jacksonville, Florida, after her family moved there, until they married on August 16, 1952. They shared 38 years of happiness together until Evelyn's unexpected death in January 1990. In the winter of 1991, J. W. read an article in a Billy Graham's Decision magazine that touched his heart of a woman raising her four children alone in Cando, North Dakota. After getting in touch with her, a romance blossomed, and he and Diane Moon were married on May 31, 1992, at Cando Assembly of God church. The spent almost 22 years together. J. W. unconditionally stepped in as a father to Diane's children and loved them as his own, as they did him, as well.
Mr. McDowell was predeceased by his wife of 38 years and mother of their daughter, Evelyn Plemmons McDowell; his parents, Walter and Henrietta McDowell; his sisters, Pauline McDowell and Louise Carter; his brother, James McDowell; his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Roy and Mamie Plemmons; and a very special uncle, Jamie Bell.
He is survived by his forever friend and wife of over 21 years, Diane Moon McDowell; his daughter who adored her Daddy and his son-in-law, Saralyn and Keith Smith of Byron; his daughters and sons-in-law, Sheyna and Josh Buck of St. Augustine, FL, and Colleen and Duncan John of Jacksonville, FL; his sons and daughters-in-law, Seth and Natialie Moon of Helena, AL, and Will and Amanda Moon of Perry; his brothers, Buddy McDowell (Jackie) and Willie Ed McDowell (Mary Ann), both of Elko; his sister, Dolly Streetman (P. T.) of Elko; five precious grandchildren who loved their Papa, Stephanie Phipps (Ryan) of Statesboro, Addie and McKenna Moon of Perry, Jordan Buck of St. Augustine, FL, and Bradley Moon of Helena, AL; one adorable great-grandson, Mitchell Phipps of Statesboro; and many nieces, nephews, extended family, and countless friends.
Many sincere thanks to Compassionate Care Hospice, especially caregivers Patty Thomson and Annie Jackson whom he adored, along with Chaplain Steve Womack, who took such good care of him and were a true blessing in his life during the last several months.
Mr. McDowell was a very casual man, so everyone is asked to dress casually for his Celebration of Life Service if you would like. Flowers will be graciously accepted, but Daddy would love for donations to be made in his memory to Loaves and Fishes Ministries of South Houston County, c/o Alvalyn Pope, P. O. Box 802, Perry, GA 31069 or Friends of Perry Animal Shelter (FOPAS), P. O. Box 2001, Perry, GA 31069, or First Love Ministries, 623 Pine Ridge Drive, Perry, GA 31069. The family may be contacted at the home of Keith and Saralyn Smith, 1245 Bible Camp Road, Byron - 478-825-0878.
Condolences may be left for the family in the online guestbook at www.watsonhunt.com.