On Sept. 14, 2022, Jim Sowards left this earth to be reunited with his daughter, Kelli, and those close friends and family who have gone before him.Jim and his wife of 57 years, Mary, built their life in Cashion, where they both attended school and were active in the community.
At Jim’s dad’s suggestion, he took an interest in Mary, as his dad, Merrill, described her as a “cute girl” Jim should pursue.
The two married in 1965 and had three children: Terri, Kelli and Jeff.
After graduating from Central State University in Edmond, Jim dedicated his life to farming, raising wheat, pigs and cattle.
Honored to be the first Cashion alumni named to the All-State baseball team, Jim continued to be a supporter of the Cashion school system, always supporting the sports teams and attending games, as well as being a longtime school board member.
Jim also held leadership positions on the Cashion and Crescent cooperative boards.
Some people may not know, but Jim had a great sense of humor.
He had a sly way of interjecting a funny comment at the right time, even during his last days.
Some of his best one-liners were saved for his sister, Gloria, when she came to visit or called from New York. Nothing made him happier than giving her a hard time.
Under the sometimes- gruff exterior, Jim was very kindhearted. He’d stop to help anyone in need, shed a tear over an animal in pain and even spent the night with Terri’s grand champion barrow, Oreo, so that the pig was safe.
Some of Jim’s proudest moments were watching Jeff and Kelli play sports, watching Terri show her pigs and cattle, and playing with his grandkids.
Even though there was always a western or sports show playing in the background, when the grandkids wanted his attention, they had it.
Jim is survived by his wife, Mary of Cashion; daughter, Terri Arms of Fort Worth, Texas; and son, Jeff Sowards and wife Heather of Bettendorf, Iowa.
He has six grandchildren: Sarah Arms of New York, N.Y.; Megan Flaspohler and husband Jake of Fort Worth, Texas; Kaytlin Sowards; Karli Sowards; Kamryn Sowards and Cole Sowards of Bettendorf, Iowa.
He is also survived by his sister Gloria Baker and her daughter, Tess Wood, of New York, N.Y.; and his sister- in-law Beverly Morgan; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his daughter, Kelli Sowards; parents, Merrill and Marjorie Sowards; as well as numerous relatives.
Celebration of life services for Jim will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, at the Cashion High School gymnasium officiated by Greg Davis.
Services are under the direction of Smith-Gallo Funeral Home, 220 North 1st St., Guthrie.In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be made to the Kelli Sowards’ Memorial Scholarship Fund at Community State Bank of Cashion.Friends may sign the online guestbook at www.smithgallo.com.