Larry Wayne Bowen, Jr. was born to Doris Defee Bowen and Larry Wayne Bowen, Sr. on December 27, 1949. He grew up on Midland Avenue just a few doors down from his grandparents, John Morgan and Maude Defee. He attended W. B. Wicker, Floyd Knight, Sanford Middle and Central High School where he made many lifelong friends. He attended Sandhills Community College and Gaston Technical Institute where he met his future wife, Suzanne Neal. They would have celebrated 53 years of marriage in February. During this time, they had three children: Paige Bowen Batchelor, John Morgan Bowen, and Christopher Lynn Bowen. If asked, his children were his greatest accomplishments.
In 1971, Wayne enlisted in the 82nd Airborne Division as a Reservist, where he served for 7 years. Once a month for 7 years he cooked for the troops, and gained a reputation for being a pretty good cook.
During these early years Wayne was also a member of the Sanford Jaycees, helping organize Christmas parades, collecting Toys for Tots, raising money for the Burn Center of Chapel Hill and popping popcorn at the ballparks. He also served various PTO offices at the schools where his children attended.
His hobbies were boats, cars and guitars. Late at night you could hear him practicing in his den, working on songs for the Praise Team. For Sunday evening services he accompanied the Praise Team along with his wife. He would always strive for perfection and looked forward to that time with them. He was a member of East Sanford Baptist Church, where he also served as a Deacon.
Wayne loved Kure Beach and any time he could slip away, you would find him on or under the pier with his toes in the water. He loved people and had a smile that would light up any room.
Wayne loved his family deeply, he loved his church family, and he loved his pastor. But most important, he loved God, and on January 8, 2022, he met his Savior face to face.
Wayne is survived by his wife, Suzanne, and three children, Paige, Morgan, and Christopher.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Thursday, January 13, 2022, at 2:00pm at East Sanford Baptist Church in Sanford with Military Honors and Rev. Robbie Gibson officiating. The family will receive friends from 1:00 until 2:00 at the church prior to the service.
Condolences may be sent to www.coxmemorialfuneralhome.com.
Cox Memorial..."Serving GOD, by serving families in a time of need."
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