Madison - James W. Gower, age 86, of Madison, departed this life on May 30, 2012.
He was born on January 30, 1926, in Atlanta, GA, the son of Robert Lee Gower, Sr. and Marianne (Adams) Gower. He was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Mary Lou of 54 years and his youngest son, Joseph Xavier. He was a World War II Army Air Corps veteran, who proudly served his country as a staff sergeant in Okinawa. He was a member of Blessed Sacrament Church and the Knights of Columbus for over 35 years. Throughout his life, he worked in the insurance industry, first with USF&G, next as an independent agent with Hanks & Bush, and lastly as a consultant for M&I Bank. Upon his retirement, he turned to his artistic side and began painting and drawing. His favorite subjects were landscapes, birds and flowers. He was an avid golfer and bowler and enthusiastic fan of the Green Bay Packers and UW Badgers.
He is survived by his devoted family; daughter Mary Lynn Thurman and grandchildren, Cassandra, Holly, and Kenneth, Jr. of Northern Virginia; daughter Victoria Gower and son-in-law, Jim Hamers and grandchildren, Adam and Garrett of Salem, OR; daughter, Reni Gower and son-in-law, Jeff Nelson and grandchildren Erin and Hallie of Mechanicsville, VA; and son James W. Gower, Jr. of Madison. He is also survived by a small extended family of nephews and nieces and many longtime friends.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church, 2115 Rowley Ave., Madison at 11 am on Monday, June 4, 2012 with Fr. Patrick Norris, O.P. presiding. A visitation will be held at Cress Funeral Home, 3610 Speedway Road, Madison on Sunday, June 3, 2012 from 4 until 6 pm with a Rosary Service beginning at 6 pm. A visitation will also be held on Monday at church one hour prior to service. Entombment with military honors will follow mass in Resurrection Cemetery. Family and friends are invited to a luncheon back at the church following the entombment. World's greatest husband, father, and grandfather, he will always be loved and deeply missed.