Life Story / Obituary


James Adelbert Bowlby, 85, of Traverse City, died Monday, July 11, 2022.

He was born on November 9, 1936 in Elkhart, Indiana the son of Otis Jehiel and Velma Ulah (Huss) Bowlby. Jim graduated from Concord High School in Dunlap, Indiana.

Jim joined the United States Army and served during the Vietnam War.

Jim retired as a Police Officer with 20 years of service with the Elkhart Police Department, retiring in 1980. He and his wife then owned the Furniture Doctor, stripping and refinishing furniture. They then moved to Hessel, Michigan and owned the Hessel Bay Inn for over 10 years. After retirement they bought a Motorhome and traveled all over the United States for 5 years.

Jim enjoyed reading history books, hunting, fishing, anything outdoors. He especially loved his yard. Jim was known for making his homemade family wine.

He was a member of the Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Suttons Bay. Jim was a 32nd Degree Mason and a member of the Les Cheneaux Masonic Lodge #590 in Cedarville.

Jim is survived by his wife, Jacqueline Rae (Roeder) Bowlby; they were married on December 23, 1956 at St. Vincent’s Catholic Church in Elkhart; children, Jim (Joann) Bowlby of Lake Havasu City, AZ, Julie (Darryl) Clegg of Pickford and Jason (Sue) Bowlby of Cedarville; grandchildren, Christopher, Jonathan, Joshua, Rachael, Meridith, Katie, Ted, Elizabeth and Ashley; great-grandchildren, Jac, Levi, Guy and Mikel; brother, Doug Bowlby of Elkhart; nieces and nephew.

He is preceded in death by his parents and sister, Leita Weaver.

Private services will be held.

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