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Saturday, December 9, 2023
Starts at 10:00 am (Central time)
Saturday, December 9, 2023
Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)
John William Lowrey III, known as Bill (March 3, 1937 - November 15, 2023) of Shreveport, Louisiana, passed away at his home on Wednesday, November 15, 2023 surrounded by family. The son of Sophvine and John William (Jack) Lowrey, Jr., he was born and raised in Mansfield, Louisiana, attended Mansfield High School and went on to graduate from Rice University in Houston, Texas, with a B.S. in Economics, followed by a Master’s in Business Administration from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.
After an honorable discharge from the Army Corps of Engineers, he became General Manager of Bill Lowrey Motors in Natchitoches and later the General Manager of Lowrey Motor Company, Mansfield. He eventually became an investment advisor, opening the first Edward Jones Investment office in Mansfield.
He was dedicated to public service, especially in his hometown of Mansfield, where he served on the board of the DeSoto Regional Hospital, chaired the first biracial committee of the Mansfield housing authority, as well as serving First Methodist Church of Mansfield on various boards and teaching a long-running popular Sunday school class. He was named a Louisiana Young Man of the Year in 1967, he served on the State Board of Commerce and Industry in 1972, and he received the 1990 Lantern Award for leadership in manufacturing for reopening Nabors Trailers.
Bill loved reading about quantum physics, engineering, Zen Buddhism, religion, and philosophy. He held several patents on his inventions, including an early step-counting mechanism for his Runmaster runner’s watch and an image stabilized scope. A dedicated Mansfield High School Wolverines football fan, he attended as many games as humanly possible, co-founded the Quarterback Club and played the tape of their 1991 State Championship game all the time. He collected the work of local artists like David Dooley. While a student, he frequented Philadelphia jazz clubs and caught many legends live, including Nina Simone. He remained a lifelong jazz fan of artists like Keith Jarrett and Brad Meldau as well as singer songwriters like Carole King, Neil Diamond, Leonard Cohen, Guy Clark and Steve Conn.
Avid lover of gathering friends for coffee groups and happy hours, he had a gift for bringing people together. He wrangled the Mansfield mayor to surprise his mother’s swim club with an official proclamation, delighting them and his niece Lowrey. He and Sandy held the annual Lowrey Labor Day Tennis Tournament to raise money for Muscular Dystrophy. He founded the Geezers Coffee Club to gather at the Lowrey family farm in Mansfield on Thursday mornings with his father Jack Lowrey and his cohort and progressed to his own contemporaries and younger members, only ceasing during the pandemic. His neighbors at Dudley Square and sister Loretta and friends in Shreveport kept up the tradition, meeting at his house for drinks and snacks to “solve the world’s problems,” as his mother Sophvine used to say.
Above all else, Bill took great joy in his family. He married Helen Heard “Sandy” Lowrey after sweeping her off her feet literally in his Cesna 172 on a day trip to Dallas for a picnic and dinner with good friends. They were married at First Baptist Church on June 17, 1967 and enjoyed 56 years of marriage. He played music for his wife and children, took them snow-skiing, tortured them with puns and introduced them to Zen Buddhism, tolerance and acceptance of all people and Monty Python.
In addition to Sandy, he is survived by his daughter, Amy Lowrey; son, Jack Lowrey and wife, Bridget and his five grandchildren, Kelsey Jones and husband Levi of France, Thomas Lowrey and wife, Jordan of Atlanta, Blake Lowrey of Atlanta, Magnolia Lowrey-Sugg and Poppy Lowrey-Sugg of Austin; sister, Loretta Woodward; niece and nephew-in-law Lowrey and Mike Simon and their three children; brother-in-law, Cody White, and his nephews, nieces and their spouses, Cody and Carolyn White, Harris and Virginia White, Stephen and Ellen White, Jeffrey and Kristen Baucum and Sarah Baucum O’Connor and their children.
Bill is preceded in death by his brothers-in-law, Charles W. Baucum and Thomas Woodward and his sisters-in-law, Sara Margaret White and Janice Baucum.
Memorial services for John William Lowrey III, 86, will be held Saturday, December 9, 2023 at First United Methodist Church, 502 Polk St., Mansfield, Louisiana, 71052 at 11:00 a.m. A visitation will be held Saturday, December 9, 2023 at 10:00 a.m. in the Rectory. Officiating the service will be Reverend Kathy Fitzhugh and Reverend Joseph Guo.
The family suggest memorial gifts may be made to Bill’s lifelong church First United Methodist Church of Mansfield, 502 Polk St., Mansfield, Louisiana, 71052.
Bill’s last years were enhanced by special friends, Tony Sanca, Mike Melton, Mike Huff, Bo Odom, Mike Melton, John Garmany, Jeff Brainard and Miller Thomas, as well as others.
The family commends primary doctors Albert Krause, and Paul Rushing as well as Bristol Hospice and Spencer Care Service LLC for their excellent essential service.