Bill Lowe of St. Joseph, Missouri, passed away at home, after fighting an 11-year battle with Parkinson's disease, and kidney cancer. His steadfast fight was done with his ready smile, ever present orneriness, and innate courage.
Bill was the seventh child of Roy and Grace Lowe, born on November 16, 1937, in St. Joseph, Missouri. In addition to his parents, Bill is preceded in death by sister Dorothy Spinner, and brothers Harold Lowe, Kenneth Lowe, Eugene Lowe, and Raymond Lowe, as well as his nephew Mike Lawson.
He was a 1957 graduate of Central High School and worked at the Kees-Lyons Oil Company where he met the love of his life, Lida Kees. They were married on June 24, 1961 at First Presbyterian Church of St. Joseph, Missouri. His father-in-law, Paul Kees, and Bill formed the Kees-Lowe Oil Company that 20 years later became Dugan-Lowe Oil Company. Bill attended Wyatt Park Baptist Church. He was a member of Rotary Club #32, the YMCA Y-Fry, the Girl Scout board and the board of the St. Joseph Country Club for several years.
Bill's first love was his family. Playing, watching and officiating sports was another major aspect of his life. Golfing with friends at the St. Joseph Country Club was a source of great enjoyment; as was the opportunity to serve as president of the St. Joseph Country Club Board for two consecutive terms. He was also the chairman of the St. Joseph Country Club Invitational for over 20 years. Bill was a high school and collegiate official for basketball and football for over 40 years. He officiated basketball for the Big 8 (now Big 12), Missouri Valley, NAIA, and MIAA conferences. As a football official, he officiated for the St. Joseph City League Conference, Grand River Conference, Jayhawk Conference (CSIC), and the Heart of America Conference. His respected work as an official led Bill to be designated the supervisor of officials for the MIAA, where he was also inducted into the MIAA Hall of Fame in 2012. Bill was also selected to be a recruiter of officials for the National Football League. Some of his other memberships included MSHSAA and the Missouri Western University Gold Coat Club. Bill loved attending and supporting the Chiefs games with his family and friends each and every year. He received a gracious commendation for being a 55-year season ticket holder of the Kansas City Chiefs by Clark Hunt, team owner.
Surviving family left to miss his humor, integrity, orneriness, and happy times include: wife Lida, St. Joseph, Missouri; daughter Ritchey Lowe, Lee's Summit, Missouri; son Bill Lowe, daughter-in-law Jennifer Lowe, grandchildren Cameron Lowe and Avery Lowe, all of Raymore, Missouri; sister Gertrude Lawson, St. Joseph, Missouri; brother Ronnie Lowe, sister-in-law Susan Lowe, both of St. Joseph, Missouri; and many other cousins, nieces and nephews. Together, Bill and Lida treasured the time spent with family, friends and neighbors.
Celebration of Life 11:00AM Saturday, January 6, at First Presbyterian Church. The family will receive friends one hour prior to the service at the church.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions be made to the Missouri Western University Athletic Department honoring Bill's love of the university and it's athletic department.
- Bill Lowe, 81, of St. Joseph, Mo.
- Loretta LaFave, 81, of St. Joseph, Mo.
- Ray Simon, 81, of St. Joseph, Mo.
- Virginia Ebling, 81, of St. Joseph, MO
- Evelyn Joan Mapel, 81, of St. Joseph, Mo.
- Margaret E. "Maggie" Elder, 81, of St. Joseph, MO
- Colleen (Burton) Jacobs, 81, of St. Joseph, Mo.
- John David (Johnny) Sutton, 81, of St. Joseph, Mo.
- Francis Manning Bush, 81, of St. Joseph, Mo.
- Edward R. Helsel Sr. 81, of St. Joseph, Mo.