COLUMBIANA, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – Ruth Arlene Bowman, 97, of Columbiana, died Friday, July 30, from complications of congestive heart failure. At her side were her immediate family members who had accompanied her during a week of hospitalization. 

Born July 4, 1924, at home on a farm in Beaver Township, Mahoning County, she was the daughter of John W. and Vertie M. (Lehman) Detwiler.  

She was married at her home on July 3, 1948, to Paul E. Bowman. Both were life-long members of Midway Mennonite Church, Columbiana.

She walked to the Boyer (Corners) School near her home and graduated from North Lima High School in 1942. 

She was a secretary at the Ohio Leather Company in Girard, using the Gregg Shorthand Method she learned in high school. She commuted weekly on a street car she boarded at a country stop on Eureka Road north of Columbiana. She later worked in the secretarial pool at Mullins Mfg. in Salem, the office at Canfield High School, then as bookkeeper for Witmer Implement Company west of Columbiana for many years.

Ruth volunteered as church secretary at Midway, where she also taught Vacation Bible School, Sunday School and—with Paul—helped to lead the church youth group.

She served as a distribution volunteer and treasurer of the South Range Council of Church of Community (3Cs) in its early days.

She cherished her evenings with the Happy Eights Card Club, carrying on friendship with these Mullins co-workers for 55 years, starting in 1953.

She grew up helping out with the family’s diversified farm. She maintained extensive home gardens (for food and beauty) and preserved food by canning and freezing during her child-rearing years on Middletown Road, Green Township. She enjoyed singing along to show tunes at home and taking her children to musicals at the Ohev Tzedek Temple in Boardman. She loved to travel with Paul after their retirement, visiting Europe and many states. She was an encourager to her neighbors, children, grandchildren, extended family and friends.

She is survived by Paul, her husband of 73 years, now living at The Meadows at Covington, East Palestine; son, Greg (Ellen) Bowman of Greenford; daughter, Lori (Mark) Graber of Delavan, Illinois; son-in-law, John Bowman of Cambridge, Massachusetts; grandchildren, Janna, Benjamin and Maria Bowman, Sarah and Phil Bowman and Eli, Hannah, Paul and Rachel Graber and ten great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her sister, Esther Marie Detwiler; her brother, John Herbert Detwiler and her daughter, Joanne.

Visitation will be held outdoors at 10:00 a.m. Saturday, August 28 in the pavilion of the Midway Mennonite Church, 13376 Columbiana-Canfield Road, Columbiana. A memorial service at 11:00 a.m. will be held in a tent near the pavilion, followed immediately by a time of open sharing of memories. 

Out of an abundance of love for one another, all those attending are asked to wear protective face masks and observe respectful distance as COVID safety measures.

Memorial contributions may be given to Midway Mennonite Church or the Mennonite Mission Network. 

The family is grateful for care given to Ruth by the medical and all other staff serving patients on the Fourth South/Intermediate #2 floor of Mercy Health-St. Elizabeth Hospital Boardman and by staff at Hospice House of Boardman.

The family has entrusted Seederly-Mong & Beck Funeral Home in Columbiana, Ohio with the arrangements for their loved one. Family and friends are invited to visit to sign the guestbook or send private condolences.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Ruth Arlene (Detwiler) Bowman, please visit our floral store.