Douglas Gower, 71, of Hannibal, MO, passed away at 3:31 PM, Monday, October 5, 2020 at Barnes Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, MO.
Funeral services will be at 10:00 AM, Saturday, October 10, 2020 at the James O’Donnell Funeral Home in Hannibal, MO. Pastor Randy Drish will officiate.
Burial with full military honors by Emmette J. Shields American Legion Post #55 will be at Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Hannibal, MO.
Friends and Family are invited to Douglas’ Life Celebration at a visitation that will be from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM, Friday, October 9, 2020 at the James O’Donnell Funeral Home in Hannibal, MO.
Douglas was born January 10, 1949, in Timbo, Arkansas to Conley Hugh Gower and Vivian Moore Gower.
He was married to Gertie Brown on August 25, 1966 in Vandalia, MO. She survives.
Other survivors include 2 children, Kristi Pierceall (John) of Hannibal, MO and Kim Hill (Jerry) of Kings Mountain, NC, 3 step-children, Kathleen Herren (Mat) of Ft. Riley, KS, Russell Schindler of Hannibal, MO and James Schindler (Trina) of New London, MO, 1 brother, Ray C. Gower (Brenda) of Farber, MO, 2 sisters; Mary Beish of West Decatur, PA, Vicki Cragen (John) of New London, MO and 1 sister in law, Wanda Gower of Farber, MO. He is also survived by many grandchildren, great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
Douglas was preceded in death by his parents, 1 brother, Glendle Gower and 1 brother-in-law, Roger Beish.
Douglas served his country proudly in the United States Army during the Vietnam War.
Professionally Douglas began his Federal employment in 1978 as a nonpaid trainee in the Winston-Salem North Carolina Regional Office. Known for his boundless energy and willingness to always help others, Douglas was later appointed as a veteran’s benefits counselor. Douglas retired after many years of service as a Veterans Benefit Counselor for the Veterans Administration and the Disabled American Veterans in Winston Salem, NC.
Douglas graduated from Gaston Community College in Dallas, NC in 1972 with an associate degree in Business Administration. His willingness to help others has won Douglas many accolades over the years. He received the North Carolina Handicapped Citizen of the Year Award in 1978, Disabled American Veteran of North Carolina Outstanding Disabled Veteran Award from 1978-1979 and in 1980 he received the Outstanding Handicapped Federal Employee of the Year Award in Washington, DC presented by President Jimmy Carter.
Away from work Douglas enjoyed collecting pocketknives, old toys from his youth and beer steins. Old westerns on TV, war movies and science fiction flicks were a few of Douglas’s favorites to watch. A talented athlete, Douglas enjoyed playing pool, swimming and competing in a variety of wheelchair sports. Always willing to help others Douglas also took pleasure in volunteering with the American Cancer Society. A jokester at heart, that loved to tease, Douglas looked forward to the moments he shared with his family and he especially took great pride in spoiling his grandchildren.
Douglas was a Baptist by faith.
Pallbearers will be John Cragen, Dustin Cragen, John Pierceall, Caleb Pierceall, Russell Schindler, James Schindler, Mat Herren, Carl Schindler, and Keri Schindler.
Honorary pallbearers will be Alex Johnson, Noah Johnson, James Herren,, Hannah Schindler and Laken Pierceall.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.
Online condolences may be shared and video tribute may be viewed at www.JamesODonnellFuneralHome.com.