Shirley Marie Bowman Ward

Shirley Marie Bowman Ward

TROY — Shirley Marie Bowman Ward, who led Scouts, taught Sunday school, and ran a store with her husband, died on Monday, Aug. 28, 2017, at the Van Rensselaer Manor. She was 96.

“She is fondly remembered as caring, creative, and fun-loving by the many people whose lives she touched, especially by her children and grandchildren,” her family wrote in a tribute.

Born on Feb. 28, 1921 in Utica, New York, she was the daughter of the late John Emmet and Marie Patrick Bowman. She lived her early life on her family’s farm in Plainfield Center, New York, attending a one-room schoolhouse in Plainfield and later the West Winfield Central School in West Winfield, New York.

On Jan. 27, 1940, she married Kenneth Burnett Ward, moved to Waterbury, Connecticut and, in 1944, back to West Winfield where she worked as a home health aid and, with her husband, owned and operated Ken’s Appliance and Novelties Store, retiring in 1978 to Lake Worth, Florida.

She was instrumental in the development of the West Winfield Girl Scout Lone Troop One, serving as a Scout leader for 15 years. With her husband and friend Edna Lewis, she built Locus Lodge, a camp for Lone Troop One and Scout troops in neighboring communities; a picnic area open to the community; and an in-town Scout meeting barn.

She served as a Sunday-school teacher in the Federated Church in West Winfield and later in the Community Christian Church in Lake Worth, Florida.


Shirley Marie Bowman Ward is survived by two sons, Bruce Ward and his wife, Becky, of Herkimer, New York, and John Ward of Utica; three daughters, Patricia Ward VanHoesen and her husband, Don, of Troy; Lisa Ward Garza and her husband, Gilbert, of Lake Worth, Florida, and Deborah Ward Farrar and her husband, Greg, of Cape Coral, Florida; 22 grandchildren, several great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.

Her family gives special thanks to friend and caregiver Charlotte Harrington of Troy.

Mrs. Ward’s husband of 63 years, Kenneth Ward, died before her as did their son James Ward; her parents, John and Marie Bowman; her brothers, John, Richard and Gary Bowman; her sisters, Madelyn Gonyea and Greta Cleary; and her grandson, Nick Nowery.

A graveside service will be conducted at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 9, at the West Winfield Cemetery. Family and friends are welcome to attend.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Van Rensselaer Manor, 85 Bloomingrove Drive, Troy, NY 12180.

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