Cover photo for Patricia G Bowden's Obituary
Patricia G Bowden Profile Photo

Patricia G Bowden

March 17, 1936 — March 14, 2024

Torch Lake

Patricia G Bowden

Patricia Genevieve Bowden passed away peacefully on March 14, 2024. 

She is survived by her devoted husband, John Bowden; daughter Trudy Cary and her former son-in-law Tim Cary; sons Don (Jenny) Hill and Dave (Patty) Hill; and daughters Mary Bowden, and Tricia (Jason) Bowden. She was preceded in death by their sons Mark Schledorn and Dale Hill, and grandson Ryan Cary, who have been sorely missed by us all. 


Patsy is survived by her baby sister, Micky (Jeff) Plumridge, and so many dearly loved nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, Charles and Genevieve Daniels, and her siblings: Jack, Joyce, Bobby, Glory, Wava, and Jimmy. Much of the Daniels family spent many years living in the Seven Harbors neighborhood in Highland, MI, a time we all reflect upon fondly.


Nonny is survived by her many grandchildren:  Brandon, Lacey (Cyr), Ashley, Dylan, and Dallas Cary; Barbara Schledorn Capps; Lexi Hill; Michael, Reanne, and Andrew Hill; Kenny Mier, Ashton Hill, and Donovan Walraven.


Also her great grandchildren: Taylor, Grace, Alexa, Caleb, Chance, and Maddison; Brooklynn and Jaxson; Blake, Bishop, Sebastian, and Shay; Landon and Kaylon; Scarlet, Sydney, and Silas; Abby and Jacob.


Pat Bowden had a long career managing various regional offices for the Secretary of State, including Traverse City, Petoskey, Gaylord, Cheboygan, Charlevoix, and several Upper Peninsula towns as a relief manager. She drove long distances and was away from early morning to evening time - and never missed a field trip, school band concert or competition. She was the chaperone that told the kids to behave and then went to bed, knowing they would do as she asked (mostly). Pat was one of the strong women of the Upper Torch Lake Association who hosted fundraising dinners and Fireman’s Field Day at Barnes Park to help ensure that the locals would have ambulance and fire services in the neighborhood. 


Our mom played Lava Monster with us, gathered moss and wintergreen to make terrariums, taught her children and the neighborhood kids to crochet and sew for 4H, took her own kids and any cousin or neighborhood child who was around to the beach for long days filled with sun, sand, and peanut butter sandwiches. Our spiritual upbringing was entrusted to Andrew Lloyd Weber and Tim Rice; Jesus Christ Superstar, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat albums played every weekend, along with Fiddler on the Roof, Evita, Cats, Phantom of the Opera, Dave Brubeck, and Neil Diamond, always our dear Neil Diamond ….


Patsy loved to garden; she did so haphazardly, but everything she planted, thrived. Like the poinsettia she took to her Clearwater, FL residence for a winter, and had to take out as it threatened to overtake the carport. And the avocado she started there, and had to remove after cutting it back twice because it was hanging over the neighbor’s house! In the last few years she held warm weather in her heart by nurturing dozens of geraniums, keeping them alive through our long dark winters. Nonny taught her granddaughters to can tomatoes and peaches, and her bread and butter pickles and pickled beets are unsurpassed. We aren’t sure any of us will ever be able to capture how much “a little of that, some of this” actually is. 


We would like to honor our dad, John Bowden, for the service, devotion, and love that he poured over Patsy in the 7 1/2 years that he cared for her. He cooked all of Patsy‘s meals in that span, and was careful to give her good nutrition, as well as all her favorites. The cup of hot coffee, homemade cookie, and an hour’s visit at the start every day was just one of their special rituals. Dad made sure Mom was able to get out and about, even (and perhaps especially) when she was feeling down about the loss of her independence. They enjoyed Senior Night at the casino (well, Dad watched sports while Mom played the quarter slots), afternoon drives, finding yard sales, and having ice cream sundaes together.   His patience was limitless, his housekeeping diligent, and his cookies and apple cake divine.


Thank you to Bernadette, Connie, Donna, Wendy, Jeanne, and all the nurses and aids of Munson Hospice who attended so lovingly and tenderly to our Patsy with us through these last weeks. Your guidance and compassion allowed us to care for her at a level we could not have managed without you.


As Pat recently stated to her niece Jane Mouton and great-niece Holly Collison, “There will be no funeral. If you have one, I won’t be there.” 


If you’d like to honor Patsy’s memory, please consider donating to The Good Samaritan Family Services or Front Porch Ministries in Ellsworth, MI. Her favorite weekend hangout with her daughters and John always included a Chicken Ranch Wrap with Jan and our friends at The Front Porch, then a walk across the street to visit Catherine at the Good Sam Furniture Store, and a drive down the road to the Good Sam Resale Shop. Mom taught us the importance of turning over every piece of pottery and china to find the maker’s mark on the bottom, and the value of not caring if a thing is worth money, as long as we love it.


From The Prophet, by Kahlil Gibran, an instrumental text in Patsy’s way of looking at the world and raising her children. The book was first given to her by Dr Naz, who delivered all of her children, and many of her nieces and nephews, in Pontiac, MI:


You would know the secret of death.

But how shall you find it unless you seek it in the heart of life?


For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?

And what is it to cease breathing but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?


Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing.

And when you have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb.

And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.

Arrangements are under the care of the Central Lake Chapel of Mortensen Funeral Homes.  Please sign her online guestbook at


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Patricia G Bowden, please visit our flower store.


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