Donald Eugene “Gene” Bowman, 88 of Canonsburg passed away peacefully on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 in Canonsburg Hospital.
He was born on August 23, 1929 in Meyersdale to John Henry and Cora Hoffman Bowman who preceded him in death.
On August 27, 1977 he married his beloved wife Audrey Abood Bowman who survives.
He retired from United Steel Workers in 1991 as Director of Contracts.
He was a graduate of Canonsburg High School and Waynesburg College. Mr. Bowman taught math and English at Cecil High School, Canon Mc-Millan High School and was a guidance counselor at Chartiers Houston High School.
He also coached wrestling at all three schools. He was a longtime “Ambassador of High School Wrestling”. Gene Bowman was not only an outstanding wrestler, coach and referee, his name was well-known throughout the United States high school wrestling community as a man with a passion for wrestling.
Gene was a four year wrestling letterman at Canonsburg High School, undefeated in regular season competition during the 1945, 1946 and 1947 seasons. He was a three time WPIAL champion, 112 lbs., in 1945, 120 lbs., in 1946 and 1947 and a PIAA runners-up at 120 lbs. His overall high school record was 96-9 for a winning percentage of .914. In addition to his high school record he was a five time AMA-AAU champion and a 1947 National Junior AAU Champion.
His wrestling coaching career started as head coach at Cecil High School 1957-58, moving to become assistant coach at Canon-McMillan High School 1959-1965 and head coach at Chartiers-Houston High School 1965-1969. Bowman was a PIAA Official for many years.
Bowman became the Executive Director of the prestigious (Press Old Newsboys Wrestling Classic) Dapper Dan Wrestling Classic, pitting the best of Pennsylvania vs. the USA (A collection of the very best high school wrestling seniors in the United States) 1975-1999.
A member of the outstanding 1947 Canonsburg High School wrestling team that was inducted into the Washington/Greene Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame, Class of 1994 also being inducted individually in 2006. He was inducted into the Pennsylvania Wrestling Hall of Fame, Class of 1989. He also was a member of the Canon-McMillan Hall of Honor in 2014.
Mr. Bowman had many hobbies which included golfing, hunting, Scholastic Wrestling but above all, spending time with his loving family and friends.
In addition to his wife, he is survived by his children Marsha Bowman, Darla (Eddie) Monaco, John (Christine) Bowman, Mark (April) Gross, Jeff (Mary Ann) Gross and Michele (Scott) Pennine, grandchildren Zachary (Kaitlen) Bowman, Jared (Alex) Bowman, Joshua Gross, Maria (Tim) Gray, Jonathan (Brooke) Gross, Ashley (Jordan) Batt, Michael Gross, Matthew (Kelly) Gross, Jaclyn Gross and Ava Bruschi, and great grandchildren Jeremiah, Mark, Greta, Eleanor, Veronica, and Joshua and many nieces and nephews.
At the request of the deceased viewing, services and entombment are private. Arrangements have been entrusted to Salandra Funeral and Cremation Services, Inc., Joseph P. Salandra, owner/supervisor, 304 West Pike Street, Canonsburg, 724-745-8120.
Memorial contributions are suggested to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, www.stjude.org