Phyllis Ione (Carter) Cowan

Clark Funeral Home

Phyllis Ione (Carter) Cowan

Stanton - Phyllis Ione (Carter) Cowan, 93, most recently of Stanton, TX, passed away peacefully and entered eternal Heavenly rest on June 17, 2021, at Parkview Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Big Spring, TX, where she had resided for the past couple months.

Born August 17, 1927, in Decatur, NE, Phyllis was the most elderly remaining Cowan/Carter family member of what in popular American culture is called "The Greatest Generation," a tribute to that generation's contributions during World War II and beyond. Growing up and being a part of that generation instilled in Phyllis a life-long dedication to hard work, family, and friends. Described as daughter, sister, friend, wife, mother, good neighbor, card player, crossword puzzle solver, and avid reader, Phyllis provided her children with an appreciation for the value of hard work and education. She embraced the world around her and provided a positive example of what is possible for those who strive for a good life.

Following high school graduation in Norfork, AR, Phyllis attended business school, married soon thereafter, began a family, and later started a career in the medical field.

Phyllis married James Gordon "Buck" Cowan December 25, 1946 in Omaha, NE. While they were both from the same community in Arkansas, they only met when James visited a sister who was living in Omaha. Phyllis was a roommate to one of James' sisters. Soon after the couple married, they moved to Arkana, AR, a small community near Mountain Home, where both their families lived. During their nearly 10 years of living in the Arkana area, the Cowan's became parents to five children and where she held a variety of jobs to help support the family. They moved from Arkana to a farm near Stella, MO, in 1956 and lived there until June of 2009, when Mr. Cowan passed away at the age of 88. About a year later, Phyllis moved to Neosho, MO, where she resided until 2018, and then moved to live with her eldest daughter, Nancy, in Stanton, TX.

Soon after moving to the Stella farm, Phyllis began working at Cardwell Memorial Hospital in Stella, first as a nurse's aide and later filing insurance for patients. She worked at Cardwell Memorial for more than 25 years and then another decade at Oak Hill Hospital in Joplin, doing medical transcription. While working in medical transcription, she attended continuing education conferences around the country to stay abreast of best practices.

Beyond work and raising a family, Phyllis enjoyed flower and vegetable gardening and was often busy in the summer months canning vegetables. Family and friends visiting the Cowan's never left empty-handed; they were given fresh vegetables in the summer or canned goods in the winter, along with flowers, or flower bulbs, and even fresh homemade bread. Phyllis was also a prolific quilt maker, making quilts for all her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. In addition, she loved to read and had an extensive library. As her eyes began to fail in later life, she continued to enjoy audio books.

Phyllis was preceded in death by her husband of 62 years; son, James Gerald Cowan; parents, sister, and brother. Survivors include four children and their families: Nancy Broadway in Stanton, TX, Janet Cowan in Holiday Island, AR, David Cowan in Houston, TX, and Donald Cowan in Sumter, SC; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. Other survivors include Connis Osborne, a sister-in-law and David Osborne, a brother-in-law, from Somerset, TX; Tim Cowan, a brother-in-law and Sharon Cowan, a sister-in-law, from Rural Retreat, VA; and several nieces and nephews.

A celebration of life memorial will be held at Clark Funeral Home, 312 South Wood Street in Neosho, MO, on Saturday, September 4, 2021, at 10:30 a.m. A family visitation period will follow the memorial service until noon. Friends and neighbors are invited to join the family in celebration of Mrs. Cowan's life. Rather than flowers or other remembrances, the family suggests a donation to a local Meals on Wheels or other favorite charity.

~Lovingly written by the Cowan family~

Online condolences may be posted at

Services are under the direction of Clark Funeral Home, Neosho, MO.

Published on June 28, 2021