Ezekiel “Zeke” Jr., age 94, of Hamilton, a member of the quickly disappearing “Greatest Generation”, went Home to be with his Lord and Savior on October 16, 2019. On January 24, 1925, Zeke was born to Ezekiel and Bertha Bowling in Hamilton. Shortly thereafter, his family moved back to Laurel County, KY. He attended Rough Creek Grade School and Bush High School. The family moved back to Hamilton in 1941 where he attended Hamilton High School. Zeke left high school to enlist in the Navy. He served in WWII from 1943-1945 as a Gunner’s Mate to the Amphibious Force and served on LST 221 in the Pacific. While on leave from the war, he married Jewell Irene Gray, and they were happily married for 75 years. Upon discharge from the Navy in January, 1946, Zeke attended the National School of Meat Cutting in Toledo, OH. After graduation, he worked for 22 years at Eaton Manor, managing the meat processing center that he created. During that time, he grew the department into a major distributor of processed meat and food products. In 1969, he joined ARAMARK Food service, headquartered in Philadelphia, PA, retiring in 1995, after 26 years. After retiring he worked as a Consultant for ARAMARK until age 84. During his employment, Zeke established the first of four food warehouse and distribution centers for ARAMARK, serving five states. His knowledge of meat processing and the economics of purchasing and contract negotiations were his major strengths. Zeke was a 60 + year member of the Masonic Lodge. He was a member of the Hugh L. Bates Lodge, Hamilton, Scottish Rite, Cincinnati, and the Shriners. He enjoyed tennis and bowling until he was 86, winning awards in the Senior Olympics. Zeke was a wood carver until his death, being recognized with awards in various competitions; his favorite carvings were personalized canes he made for family and friends. Zeke was an active member of the First Baptist Church of Hamilton where he served as a Deacon, Trustee, landscaper, snow plowman, and general handyman. Family was of upmost importance to Zeke; he always supported his sons and grandchildren in the sports and activities.
He had seven siblings, Fred (died at age 1), Janet (died at birth), Beulah, Elizabeth “Libby”, Ronald, Donald, and David. All predeceased Zeke. He is survived by his wife Jewell; sons, Larry (Marilyn), Hamilton, OH, Tim (Mary), Plano, TX, Jeff (Kay), Cumming, GA; six grandchildren, Brent Bowling, Hamilton, OH, Deron (Monica) Bowling Morrow, OH, Heather (Tim Clark) Bowling, Dallas, TX, Stephanie (Brian) Johnson, Dallas, TX, JB (Joi) Bowling, Cumming, GA, and Tysen (Ondriana) Bowling, Cumming, GA; Thirteen great grandchildren, Conner, Wade Ezekiel (died at 11 weeks), Riley Bowling, Hamilton, OH, Benjamin, William, Vivian, and Louis Ezekiel Bowling, Morrow, OH, Josiah, Jacob and Jayla Bowling, Cumming, GA, William and Cecily Clark, Dallas TX, and Jade Johnson, Dallas, TX.
A memorial service celebrating Zeke’s life will be conducted, Saturday, October 26, 2019 at 12 p.m. with Dr. Rev. Dan Clemens officiating. Visitation will be from 10 a.m. until the time of service at First Baptist Church of Hamilton, 1501 Pyramid Hill Blvd. Hamilton, 45013. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be given to the church. Condolences may be offered at www.avancefuneralhome.com
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First Baptist Church of Hamilton
1501 Pyramid Hill Blvd, Hamilton OH 45013