Rev. Leland 'Lee''s Story
Rev. Leland 'Lee' Bowman went home to be with the Lord on July 10, 2017, under the loving care of Briody's Nursing Home. He was born at home on March 31, 1926 to Leroy and Sadie (Grey) Bowman in Salina, PA.
Following high school graduation, Lee attended A.M. Chesbrough Seminary, and later Greenville College in Illinois. He moved to Evanston, IL, where he worked s a bookkeeper and bank teller at the First National Bank. It was in Evanston where he met his future wife, Melva. Lee and Melva (nee Oldham) were married on June 5, 1948, in Elgin, IL.
In 1953, they moved to Rochester, NY, and he worked at Kodak. While working there, Lee discerned a call into the ministry of the Gospel. While serving in various churches, he attended Alfred University and later graduated from Geneseo State, with a BA in English. He did his student teaching in the Mount Morris School District. He later attended Colgate Rochester Divinity School where he received his Masters of Divinity. All told, Lee served as a parish minister for 50 years, and served in Newfane, Warrens Corners, Alden, Bowmansville, and West Barre to name a few. One of his favorite assignments was to minister at the Niagara County Jail where he became part of the team known as the "God Squad" Following his retirement in 1989, he moved with Melva to Lockport where they resided on Locust Street.
Lee remained active in his church and community. He became a member of the Lockport Glee Club, a volunteer for Lockport Cares, and an organist for many years at Emmanuel United Methodist Church and also Lockport United Church of Christ. Lee enjoyed fly fishing with his sons, spending time with his grandchildren, and traveling to Yellowstone, and also to the Holy Land.
He was predeceased by his parents and siblings, Ruby Schaffer, Aleta Gilliland, Ruth George, and Elizabeth Tryon. He is survived by his wife, Melva; sons, Bruce Bowman of Lockport, Brian (Ann) Bowman of Fredonia, NY, David Benn of South Africa (exchange student); and grandchildren, Matthew Bowman of California, James and Rachel Bowman of Fredonia; his sister-in-law, Mary Lapp of Kendall; and several nieces and nephews.
Funeral arrangements were provided by Prudden & Kandt Funeral Home, 242 Genesee St., Lockport, NY. A Celebration of Life will be held on July 22, 2017 at 11 AM at the Emmanuel United Methodist Church, 75 East Avenue, Lockport NY. Interment will be at St. Peter's Cemetery, Lockport, NY at the convenience of the family. Memorials may be made to Emmanuel United Methodist Church at the above address and the Lockport United Church of Christ, 98 East Avenue, Lockport, NY 14094.
Published on July 18, 2017