Dorothy Jean Cowles
Dorothy Jean Cowles, 81, of Groves passed away Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015, surrounded by family after a short illness.
Known as Jean by students, family and friends, she was a third grade teacher, first at Groves Elementary then at Van Buren Elementary in Groves, a profession she loved for more than 30 years until her retirement.
She began her teaching career under the direction of Lewis Ford, principal at Groves Elementary, whom she greatly respected. Ford’s wife, Irene, started a girls drill team at Port Neches High School when Jean was a student there and she and a small group of her classmates were the original members of what later was called the PN-G Indianettes. Those classmates continued to be good friends throughout their lives.
Jean loved her church family at First Baptist Church-Groves where she was a volunteer Sunday school teacher for 15 years. She cared greatly for cats and dogs and gave many stray animals a meal and a place to stay. She loved camping and fishing with her family and preparing family feasts for the extended family each holiday season.
Jean was born in 1934 in Kilgore, Texas, to Charles and Dixie Jo Babb. She moved to Groves at a young age and attended school in the Port Neches- Groves School District, where she was an honor student during high school. She went to a Baptist college in Marshall where she met Jack, her husband to be. She completed her bachelor’s degree in education at Lamar State College in Beaumont.
She will be greatly missed by family and friends, and foremost by her husband, Jack, who she provided much loving care after he suffered a stroke several years ago.
She was preceded in death by her parents and her sister, Barbara.
Survivors include her husband of more than 60 years, Jack Cowles of Groves; one son Roger Cowles and his wife Celines Del Valle of Groves; two daughters, Robbie Bethea and her husband Richard of Bridge City, and Regina Kelley and her husband Dean of Groves; a niece, Dixie Garcia of San Antonio; eight grandchildren, John Crowell of Houston, Sabrina Harland of Houston, Jack Cowles of Groves, Robert Segovia of Austin, Katy Cowles of Houston, Ben Cowles of Austin, Ashley Newton of Bridge City, and Chris Bethea of Vidor; and five great grandchildren.
Honorary pallbearers include members of the first Indianette squad, Latretta Young, Thomasine Ward, Patsy Cox, Doris Davis, Beverly Rogers, Paula Sory, and Shirley Jones. The casket will be carried by her grandsons.
Services will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, December 12, 2015, at Levingston Funeral Home with the Revs. Joe Worley and Charles Miller officiating. Visitation will precede the services from noon until 2 p.m. at the funeral home.