Robert Cowan was born April 15, 1933 in Tres Piedras, New Mexico, to Ella Marie Bryan Cowan and Clyde Solomon Cowan. His siblings were Wayne, Bruce (of California), Louise, and Andy (of Missouri). He died March 2 at his home in Gonzales.
Bob grew up in Hatch, New Mexico, graduated from high school in Blythe, California, and enrolled at California State University on an athletic scholarship. However, he interrupted his education to join the U.S. Army, where he served as a translator during the Korean conflict. He married Ruby Deem, who was a teletype operator in the Air Force, working in the Pentagon. After the war he received a B.S. degree from the University of California at Davis, and then a master’s degree from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. He then worked as an extension agent in Palo Verde County, California, and then as a farm manager.
In 1965 he made the big move with his family to a farm near Quemado, Maverick County, Texas. In this beautiful area he was able to live out his passions: teaching and helping others and working with and admiring plants. Bob taught science at Eagle Pass High School and grew alfalfa, children, and other crops.
After his wife Ruby died, Bob married Linnea Pendley, who had also been a schoolteacher, and they subsequently moved to Gonzales. Bob volunteered as a science teacher for Grace Christian Academy.
In 2015, Robert Cowan wrote and published The Creation Story: Reconciling Science with Religion. His work in progress was a series of lessons on the structure and purpose of the Bible: Understanding the Bible in 40 Lessons.
Bob’s children are Naomi (and Edwin Martineau), Sam (and Lisa Brand), Virginia (and David David), Marilyn (and Todd Allen), and Rachel (and Patrick Guettner). He has 38 grandchildren and 47 great-grandchildren. In addition, thanks to his union with Linnea, he has six stepchildren, 18 more grandchildren, and a host of further descendants.
Visitation will be held Thursday, March 14, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church, 426 St. Paul Street, Gonzales, Texas 78629. The memorial service will be 11 a.m., Friday, March 15, at the First United Methodist Church in Gonzales. Memorial contribution may be made to the Memorial Fund of the First United Methodist Church.