Joseph Blair Bowman

June 28, 1943 - May 18, 2023

Joseph Blair Bowman, 79, Native Son of Port Republic and the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, passed away at Roanoke Memorial Hospital after a valient struggle with a myriad of health problems. The family would like to thank Dr. Terry Overby, Melissa Bland, NP; Dr. Matthew Cauchi, Dr. Murphy, and the Palliative Care and Pulonary ICU teams at Roanoke Memorial Hospital. In 1963, Joe received a projected life expectancy to age 50. He survived 30 years past his "expiration date." Never give up, never say die.

Joe is survived by his loving wife of 55 years, Jean Hooke Bowman; his borother-in-love, John Hooke (Jane); two loving cats, Paddington and Taffy and his son, Charles Scott Bowman (Debbie); his adored nieces and nephews, Roger Winegard, Charles Bowman, Rob Bowman NY, Ron Bowman, Gail Ann Heiston, Lorie Gravely, Robin Winegard and Sandy Bowman.

Joe was preceded in death by his parents, John Harry Bowman and Kathleen Pearl Groah Bowman and siblings: William Bowman (Vera, Surviving), Johnny Bowman (infant); Robert (Bob) Bowman (Peggy, Surviving); George Bowman (Bobbie Jean); Galen Bowman (Pat); and Betty Bowman Winegard (Claude, surviving), Joe was also predeceased by his nephew, Rob Bowman (CA).

After graduating from Montevideo High School in 1963, Joe received an Associate Degree in Electronics from BRCC. He then became a Master Tool and Die Maker while employed at Space Conditioning. IN 1969 he began working at Reynolds Metals (ALCOA) until he retired February 28, 2005.

Joe was very active and enjoyed every minute of his retirement. An avid reader, he retained expert knowledge of the Civil War and WWII. He enjoyed metal detecting for Civil War artifacts.

Also an active outdoorsman, he enjoyed hunting with his Brittany Spaniel, Freckles; hiking in the George Washington National Forest, riding his bike over 9,000 miles, tent camping and going to the cabin. In later years, he became a dedicated porch sitter and people watcher. He loved his neighbors and his church family at Port Republic UMC.

Celebration of life will be held Saturday, May 27th at Port Republic UMC at 2:00 PM with Pastor Tom Murphy and Pastor Marlene Chandler. If you have a memory of Joe you would like to share, please come prepared to do so.

Joe loved flowers, but should you prefer, memorial donations may be sent to the Grottoes Rescue Squad 805 Augusta Ave. Grottoes, VA 24441.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

Arrangements are entrusted to Johnson Funeral and Cremation Service in Grottoes.