Earl “Red” McCowan, 90 of Chattaroy, went home to be with the Lord on July 3, 2012 from the Skilled Nursing Facility at the Appalachian Regional Hospital in South Williamson, Ky.
He was born May 9, 1922, the son of the late Assie and Effie Hall McCowan at Boldman, Ky.
In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his first wife of 58 years, Marie McCowan; two sons, Harry Truman and William McCowan; brothers, August “Gus” Pacific and Audrey Pacific; sister, Gladys White; and stepfather August Pacific.
His survivors include his wife, Eula Alley McCowan; children: sons, Earl Jimmie (Barbara) McCowan and Robert McCowan; daughter, Annette (Mike) Marcum; stepdaughter, Barbara (Clifford) Fugitt; grandchildren, Dawn (Morris) Mullins, Kristi (John) Hyche, Todd (Marni) McCowan; step-grandchildren; Gary (Jama) Marcum, Shawne (Kelly) Wells, Terri (Michael) Polen and Jennifer (Tom) Kearse; great-grandchildren, Kaitlyn Mullins, Niki and Ali McCowan and Rebecca, Sarah, Anna, Stephen and Jonathan Hyche; step-great-grandchildren, Kaylee and Mason Wells, Paiton and Landon Marcum, Tanner and Reese Polen.
Earl enlisted in the United States Marine Corps on October 9, 1942, and was discharged on November 16, 1945 with the rank of PFC. He served proudly in the Asia Pacific Area from January 13, 1944, to October 31, 1945. He participated in action against the enemy on Kwa Jalein Atoll from February 1 to February 14, 1944; Saipan from June 15, to July 9, 1944; Tinian from July 25 to August 1, 1944; and on Iwo Jima from February 19, to March 16, 1945.
He was awarded the Purple heart for wounds received in action on Saipan on July 6, 1944. Earl was also given the following awards: Presidential Unit Citation with ribbon bar and one bronze star awarded Fourth Marine Division, Saipan and Tinian 1944 and Assault Troops V Amphibious Corps, Iwo Jima February 19, to 28 1945; American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign medal with four bronze stars, Victory Medal, World War II, Rifle Marksman Badge and Letter of Commendation from CG, 4th Marine Division for service on Iwo Jima on February 20, 1945.
Red enjoyed being a member of the Disabled American Veterans Chapter 141 at Belfry, Ky., and served as Chaplain where he has been performing rites at military funerals since 1947.
Earl worked as a coal miner for most of his adult life. He worked at Eastern Coal Corporation, Pond Creek, and in 1952 he went to Island Creek Mines #25 as a dispatcher and retired in 1991.
He had the honor of being named King Coal in 2004.
Red also served as a member on the Mingo County PSD for over twenty five years and was instrumental in obtaining many of the benefits that we now have.
Earl was a member of the Church of Christ at Nolan.
Red’s great loves in his life was family, friends and the Marine Corps. He says that being a Marine was the greatest honor he has ever received. He will be missed by his family, extended family and friends.
Funeral services will be held at the R. E. Rogers Funeral Home Chapel in Belfry, Saturday July 7, at 1 p.m. with the Rev. Dwayne Smith officiating. The obituary will be read by Rev. Lyle Marcum. Visitation will be at R. E. Rogers Funeral Home on Friday July 6, from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. Burial will follow in the Lenore Memorial Gardens at Lenore. Military rites will be performed at the graveside by the Belfry Chapter #141 Disabled American Veterans. Pallbearers will include Robert Adams, Robie Adams, William Ooten, Frank Smith, Charlie Whie, Garland Sheppard, Ronnie Ferrell and Bill Headen. Honorary pallbearers will include members of the Disabled American Veterans and friends of the family.
R. E. Rogers Funeral Home of Belfry, is in charge of arrangements. Oline condolences at rerogersfuneralhome.com