Memories of Ron - Given at his Memorial Service
Contributor: snkissed100 Created: 1 month ago Updated: 1 month ago
Good afternoon everyone. My name is Carmen Bowman, I am married to Bo who is also known as Guy in his family and I am Ron’s daughter-in-law. I was asked to share the eulogy and it is my honor. I’m sharing memories of others and some of my own and since we don’t want anyone to feel left out, there will be a time for anyone to share any reflection we didn’t get over email or you think of here today.
Daughter Robbin fondly remembers as a little girl going with Daddy on the train in Italy to get a beautiful doll and often sharing Hot Tamale candies with Daddy. She also remembers a special day when Ron took Bob, Doug, Kelly & Robbin to Huck Finn Day at Washington Park. Before we went, she says, Daddy took the boys off to the side to give them fishing pointers. Guess who caught the fish that day? The girls. However, Ron was quick to say, "You catch 'em - You clean 'em," So, the girls learned how to clean fish that day. Robbin admits though she never learned how to set up a fishing pole, Ron always did it for her gladly touching the worms so she didn’t have to.
Robbin makes a very astute observation most of us know to be true: you knew Ron liked you if he gave you a hard time. She says, “Our hard headedness & stubbornness is genetic I'm sure. A fun memory is the 4 of us kids taking Daddy down and putting pink curlers in his hair. Carleen has pictures to prove it (and they are in the slide show). He will always be "Daddy" to me - I already miss him more than words can possibly express -- my heart is truly breaking! There’s so much more to do and say! Time goes by so quickly, and we don't say I Love You enough.” So true Robbin.
Sister-in-law Melanie Bosselman shares, “One of my favorite things about Ron was his willingness to act as chauffeur . . . for everyone! He and Carleen would come up to Cheyenne for birthdays, concerts, and visits with the kids and grandkids. He was a faithful driver, picking up Wanda from across town (Carleen’s mother in Aurora) and bringing Wanda and Carleen up for various occasions. We got to see so much more of Wanda and Carleen because Ron would act as their driver. He never complained, and we loved having his fun, quiet presence here. He was always so willing to do anything he could to help Wanda and Carleen. It was wonderful to see his relationship with both of them.”
Carleen’s aunt Barbara (Wanda’s sister) says, “The memories I have of Ron are of times at our many family reunions over the years., his dry sense of humor, and his kindness. I think of the time Ron & Carleen came and took me to Cheyenne to be at the wedding reception for niece Angela, and also of a trip to Kiowa. Ron drove to Loveland to get me, then back to Aurora to pick up Wanda, then to Kiowa for a wonderful visit with family and a trip to the museum. Then Ron did all that long drive in reverse to bring me back to Loveland. I so appreciated his willingness to include me. I enjoyed hearing Ron share stories about his younger years. He was a kind and gentle man, and he will be greatly missed.”
Nephew Luke Towne enjoys fond memories of his uncle Ron remembering staying at Ron and Carleen’s and Uncle Ron’s collection of movies on Beta Max and his James Bond car.
Cousin Carol Raboin shares special memories of the trip Ron and Carleen took to see them in Alaska in 2008 which included Anchorage, the Seward Highway to Portage Lake, around the Turnagain Arm In Cook inlet and getting to see what the locals call Big Mountain Denali - a sight sometimes covered by clouds. She remembers Ron saying, "Oh I wish I had my fishing gear... I want to catch a salmon!" When teasing Ron to kiss the "cement" beluga as many visitors do, Ron said he would rather fish... When they went into the Portage Lake visitor center to show Ron the "ICE WORMS," Ron only laughed when Carol joked about using the ice worms to catch fish as they are the size of a straight pin.
Long-time friend Laurel Koenig shares, Carleen, as you know Ron was a very best friend to Russ. His favorite memories are all the trips to the mountains in the truck. They told many stories of that. Also all the hunting trips they took together. That was where all our kids got to know him and they all loved him. He was a true friend of 40 years.
And now special remembrances from Ron’s wife Carleen.
As Ron's wife for 43 1/2 years, I can say I was truly blessed to be married to this man. The LOVE of MY LIFE !!
We were soul mates, and best friends. He was my confidant, supporter in whatever I thought or attempted to do, my very solid rock. My chauffeur, as he liked to drive and I didn't due to my eyesight, a great travel guide when we took road trips, sometimes he had been on that particular highway hauling gas. We 'switched roles' several years ago; he took on cooking and kitchen clean up, as I was away from home caring for my Mother and continued even when my rotation was over and I returned home, enabling me to tackle other pursuits --bills and weeding.
He ironed his shirts when I didn't have time, he never minded shopping; for groceries, window shopping or perusing a curio store. I did learn to be careful of what I said; often if I casually admired something, it would come home with us.
I always felt safe with Ron, more often than not, we held hands or he had his arm around me. Years ago, if I visited his office, he would tell his drivers to 'watch their language' as his wife was present. He was a good listener, to me as well as others. I often thought he knew me better than I did. He always had the right answer. I considered him quite romantic in his own way; Throughout the years he would often introduce me as his 'bride'. Our anniversary is October 4th. '10-4' It seemed fitting as when we married, he was in the Police Department. '10-4' is one of the codes they use. Over the years, twice a day, each day we would watch the clock and tell each other '10:04 -- I love you'. We would often choose to wear the same colors in our choice of attire, on purpose! Sometimes people would notice, sometimes not, but to us it was a sign of our unity. A phrase Ron often told me was, 'It will be alright', and most often, it was.
Another phrase Ron used often was 'We do for Family' and it usually involved travel, going the extra mile, or including someone in our adventures, or understanding that I needed to help my Mom on a regular basis over the last several years.
Early in our married life, Ron enjoyed reading western novels by Louis L'Amour. We joined a book club and began collecting. He and Jim, Melanie's father, also enjoyed the author, and a bond was formed. They used the names of their favorite characters when emailing each other. It was great to see and listen to when the two were together. Ron sent his collection of paperbacks on to Jim who was most appreciative.
Ron usually carried two handkerchiefs, one for himself, for the usual use, and one for me, should I shed a tear.
I admired Ron for his fight, his resolve, each day against this disease that was taking life away from us. No matter what he was faced with, he dealt with it without complaint, doing his best to be a good patient for my sake.
Every day I will miss my confidant, my supporter, my husband, but I know he is in Heaven with our Lord Jesus Christ, now free of pain and whole once again. And, I am comforted by that.
Did Ron call any of you by the name Fred? Do you know what it meant? It usually meant he didn’t remember your name. Pretty creative, huh? Actually, Carleen filled in the history by stating it started when Carleen’s brother Chris and wife Melanie had their first child and since they didn’t name her for several days, Ron referred to her as Fred. Her following three siblings also received that name and now that some are parents themselves, often called Ron Uncle Fred. On either side, it is a term of endearment.
Granddaughter Nicki saw Ron on Sat. May 27 five days before Ron’s homegoing and now has a great story. Ron asked her if she had any money. She said yes, what do you want Grandpa, I’ll get you anything. He then conked out for a while and when he woke he asked her, “Did you get some?” She said get what grandpa? Pepsi. I’ll go get you Pepsi and he downed two Pepsi cans calling her Angel the whole while.
Probably about 5 years ago Ron and Bo went fishing at Lake Maconohay in Nebraska. Ron caught his largest fish ever, a 46 inch pike. I’ll use my new GoPro Dad and get it all. Click. Later Ron asked to see it. Bo went to find it, he kept looking, it got quiet. Ron asked, “Did you get it?” “I guess not.” And it was “a thing” between them ever since.
If you hung out with Ron for any length of time especially at Preparedness Gear, Bo’s store in Frederick, you learned how much he liked to give a hard time. Bantering began back with Ron’s brother, Uncle Wayne. A special memory for me and Bo is when we were engaged and first married at meals at Ron and Carleen’s, Wayne would tease so much I didn’t quite know how to take it so what to say so I just kept eating … and chewing … so I didn’t have to. Even Ellie has learned from Grandpa and her dad Bo how to banter with the best of them.
Trivia question: how many bones has son Bo broken? Yep 43 we think at last count. Keeping that in mind, this won’t surprise you. When Bo and I got engaged and came over to celebrate, Ron greeted us at the door with, “Good, now you can pay the hospital bills.” … And I have.
A precious memory is Carleen’s birthday last month on May 4th. We had asked Grandpa what we could get for him to give to Carleen. He said a card and chocolate. Ellie sneaked them into the house and helped Grandpa sign the card. When Ron handed Carleen a birthday card and gift, she cried. Wept really. I realized in that moment why Carleen. Cards and gifts wrapped with ribbon is your love language. Carleen faithfully remembers birthdays and other important dates with a sought out perfect card sent before or right on time. It was a precious moment.
And I just want to close with two verses from God’s Word.
The morning after Ron, because he is a believer, moved to heaven, I read this.
“May the Lord bless you from Zion all the days of your life; may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem and may you live to see your children’s children.”
We realized in Ron’s case he lived to see his children’s children’s children’s children. That’s amazing.
I’ve realized just lately something I didn’t realize, that Ron was known for not complaining or whining. Going through cancer and pain and rehab centers and hospitals, Carleen reports he didn’t complain once. In the Bible in the book of Philippians Chapter 2: verse 14 Paul says, “Do everything without complaining or arguing.” I’d say that is a great legacy for all of us to emulate.