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1924 Barbara 2020

Barbara Cowan

1924 — January 1, 2020

Indianapolis, Indiana

Barbara Jones Cowan, 95, of Fishers, passed away Saturday, April 25, 2020. She was born June 27, 1924 in Syracuse, NY to Edgar O’Dell and Viola Bell Barr Jones.

She had one sister, Laura Jean, who was 4 years older. When Barbara was still quite young, her family moved to Worcester, Massachusetts where her dad worked in a rescue mission.  Barbara loved life and had a wonderful childhood. Most importantly, she accepted Jesus as her Savior during a city-wide revival in the early 1930’s.

Barbara enjoyed playing on the field hockey team and acting in dramatic productions during her high school years.  Many summers she and her family were able to vacation at Ocean Park, Maine where Barbara made many fond memories.  Barbara was a 1942 graduate of Shrewsbury High School.  She then attended Bob Jones College in Cleveland, Tennessee where she received a one year certificated from the Business College on May 14, 1944.  In 1949, she was working at a radio station in Massachusetts when she learned Bob Jones University was starting a radio station and could use her expertise. Dr. Bob Jones asked her to move to Greenville, South Carolina and help start the new WMUU. That is where she met Charles DeHart Cowan, the love of her life.  Charles and Barbara dedicated their lives to each other June 3, 1950 and enjoyed 67 wonderful years together.

Following several moves, they settled in Ames, Iowa, where they raised 3 children: Doug, Rebecca and Debby. Barbara made their house into a loving home.  She loved music and God gifted her with a strong voice and would often be heard singing throughout the day. Barbara especially loved singing in church whether in the choir, groups, or solo. When C.Y. Stephens Auditorium was built in Ames, she volunteered with the Music Guild and enjoyed opportunities to sing in one of the choirs.

Barbara enjoyed entertaining, serving and teaching others. Several summers she was the camp counsellor at Clear Lake Camp in Iowa for her daughters and other girls from Campus Baptist Church.  She served on many committees at church as well as her community. She taught Sunday school and many Bible studies over the years, even at age 91.

Barbara loved the Lord and His love shone through her as she selflessly served in many ways. Hospitality was one of Barbara’s strengths, a God given gift, and she loved to invite people into her home to visit. She often housed missionaries and others who were visiting. She loved and supported mission work in many ways, such as writing encouraging letters to missionaries and communicating the happenings on various mission fields to church members.

After Barbara and Chuck moved to Brevard, North Carolina in 1987, they often helped support the summer camp staff at the Wilds Christian Camp. In later years, Barbara graciously cared for her beloved husband as he battled dementia.  They moved to Indianapolis in 2012 to have support caring for Chuck, who was called home to Heaven in 2018. In the end, Barbara too suffered from dementia until God called her Home April 25, 2020.

In addition to her parents and husband, Barbara was preceded in death by her sister, Laura Jean Jones.

Those left to cherish her memory include her son, Douglas O’dell Cowan; daughters, Rebecca Jeanne Cowan and Deborah Sue (Daniel) Davenport; grandchildren, Jonathan (Brandi) Mankey, Miranda (Matt) Wickman, Joel (Rachael) Davenport, Oksana (Caleb) Hoag and Stephen L. Davenport; great-grandchildren, Logan and Cameron Wickman and Layna Rae and MaKenna Mankey and Hudson Carter Hoag, as well as many others whose lives she touched.

A private family graveside service will take place Saturday, May 2, 2020 in Blue Ridge Gardens of Memory, Pisgah Forest, North Carolina.

To leave a condolence for the family of Barbara Cowan, please visit "obituaries" at

Moore-Blanchard Funerals & Cremations is caring for the family.

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


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