Bedford Benny McCowan, 91, passed this life on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 in Winchester Terrace Nursing Home.
Mr. McCowan was born on Thursday, April 12, 1928 to the late William "The General" and Lovie (Genkins) McCowan in Marshall, Texas and had lived in Mansfield the past 55 years. Benny’s work life was interesting.
He started working when he was 14 years old with a log company, then worked at Boeing Beech Aircraft in Wichita, Kansas that made the model 18 aircraft for the Navy, during World War II. By the time he was 20 years old, he worked with a construction company that built major highways.
He became a foreman and was sent to Chicago where he was instrumental in building major expressways including the i-90 (Kennedy Expressway) and the Dan Ryan Expressway. He remained there for the next 17 years. This job eventually lead him to Ohio where his company built a portion of interstate 71 and route 30.
In 1965, Benny left the company and decided to make Mansfield his home. Benny joined the Mowry Construction Company and worked on the new addition of the Mt. Calvary Baptist Church where he would join in 1970 and remain a member and became the President of the Usher Board for the next 49 years. He was affectionally known City Wide as "Mansfield's Lead Usher." It was his greatest joy. It did not matter the location or occasion, Benny was ALWAYS ready to usher and serve.
Benny always worked 2 jobs retiring from Flexible in Loudonville. While employed at Flexible Benny founded his own business of recycling steel and metal that carried him all over the state of Ohio until the age of 90.
Benny was a member of the Pride of Ohio Lodge #80. He was a foster parent with his wife for many children and assisted with her daycare for many years. Benny’s hobbies were watching the Cleveland Indians, western movies, spending time with family and traveling. When asked about his favorite food he would respond; greens, neck bones, and chitterlings, that stick to your ribs good eating. The year of 2018, was a time of transition for Benny, after a fall his health began to fail. He then allowed his son to run the business, while he sat on the side lines to recover and after 49 years he left his church and joined the Mt. Hermon Baptist Church to be with his wife.
Benny is survived by his wife: Elzonia; daughter: Janette "Jan" McCowan Roy (Don Walton) Evanston, Illinois; 3 step-children that he loved as his own: Willie J. Crittenden, Rosalinda Walker, Mansfield, and Jeffrey (Raychell) Crittenden, Phoenix, Arizona; Grandchildren-Harrison Roy, Erica (Adrian) Dixon, A.J., Ava and Asani, with his wife;
14 grandchildren, 17 great-grandchildren, and 1 great-great grandchild. Two Sister-in-Laws; Joyce and Barbara, Marietta, Georgia, and One Brother-in-Law Don(Lillie)Culliver, Mansfield; A host of Nieces, Nephews, Cousins and Special Friends.
In addition to his parents Benny was also preceded in death by his Parents, his step-son Oliver Crittenden and 7 siblings; Daniel, Sam, Willie Lee, Sedilia, Georgia Mae, Lois, and Sarah. Several Nieces and Nephews.
Funeral services will be held Friday, at 11:00 AM in the Mt. Hermon Baptist Church by his pastor Rev. Clinton Hearns. Friends may call at the church where a Masonic memorial service will begin at 9:30 AM. The family will receive friends immediately following the Masonic service until the time of the funeral service. Interment will be in Mansfield Cemetery.
The family will also receive friends at their home daily from 4-7 PM until the day of the service.
Friends are invited to leave words of encouragement and comfort for the family at www.williamsfuneralservices.com.