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Norbert J. “Butch” McGowen

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Funeral services for Norbert J. “Butch” McGowen, 81, of Paoli were held Wednesday, September 25, 2019 at the Wilson-Little Funeral Home Chapel. Services were under the direction of the Wilson-Little Funeral Home in Purcell.

Mr. McGowen was born November 24, 1937 to John Henry and Elsie Williams McGowen in Paoli, Oklahoma. He was the middle of three children, including his older brother, Delano “Laney” McGowen and his little sister, Sherri. Butch grew up on a farm outside Rosedale, Oklahoma, and was a member of the last graduating class of Rosedale High School in 1957. During his childhood, Butch cut and hauled hay, farmed, played basketball and was a “hindcatch” in baseball.

Butch served his country in the United States Army from 1962 to 1963. He was stationed in Fort Carson, Colorado. When stationed in Fort Carson, he developed a life-long love of the Colorado mountains in the summertime. Butch married Patricia Joan Bennett on December 21, 1962 in Wayne, Oklahoma. Butch and Pat spent a year living in Fountain, Colorado, before returning to Purcell, Oklahoma, to start their family. Their family includes three children:  Tim Eric, Shelly Jo and Steven Lynn McGowen.

Butch’s intelligence was evident in his ability to fix almost anything, a skill that began while he was growing up on his family’s farm in Rosedale. At the age of five-six years, Butch began operating a harrow and hay rake for his grandpa and his love of haying came full circle, when he mowed his acreage this summer.

He was a consummate perfectionist; Butch believed in doing things a certain way. After managing Purcell Seed and Grain from 1964 to 1970, Butch worked as a contract carpenter. His attention to detail in finish work and in building cabinetry was highly sought after in the area. Butch’s mechanical skills were often evident in the customized modifications made to anything he purchased.

In his free time, Butch liked to work on old tractors; disassemble, reassemble and shoot guns; and, watch vintage westerns. He loved to spend summers in Colorado and, in his retirement, Butch and Pat spent many summers in Buena Vista, Colorado, where he loved to pan for gold, hunt for treasures with his metal detector, and tell tall tales with the other men at the R.V. park.

The joy of Butch’s life was his grandchildren. He loved to spend time with the grandkids and would read to them, give them rides on the four-wheeler and tractor, and watch SpongeBob and Mr. Bean (and laugh) with them. 

Butch is survived by his wife Pat, of the home; children Tim McGowen and wife, Cindy, of Purcell, Shelly McGowen of Purcell and Steven McGowen and wife, Dia, of Woodward, Oklahoma; six grandchildren, Blake McGowen and wife, Mary, of Stillwater, Oklahoma, Bailee Martinez and husband, Daniel, of Purcell, Gage Wayland and Ethan Wayland of Purcell and Reese McGowen and Kinley McGowen of Woodward, Oklahoma; brother, Delano McGowen and wife, Shelba, of Norman, Oklahoma; and, Sherri Herrin and husband, Phillip, of Oklahoma City.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation (omrf.org) in memory of Norbert McGowen.

Online condolences may be made at wilsonlittle.com.

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