Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Samuel E. ‘Sam’ McGowan, 83, flew through life without regret

Samuel E. 'Sam' McGowan
Samuel E. ‘Sam’ McGowan

Samuel E. “Sam” McGowan, 83, died peacefully at his home with his family by his side Sunday, Jan. 13, 2019. Sam was born Sept. 21, 1935, in Valdosta, Georgia.

He is survived by his wife, Nancy Baker McGowan; son, Scott E. McGowan (Kimberly); daughter, Melissa Pressley (Bobby); and two granddaughters, Kayla Pressley and Annelyse McGowan.

He is the son of the late Norman E. McGowan and Mary Lewis McGowan. He was also preceded in death by his sister, Ann McGowan Davis. Surviving siblings are the Rev. Dr. John L. McGowan (Eleanor) and Mary McGowan Hutchens; and many nieces and nephews.

To live a full life is one of the greatest blessings any of us can wish for. To have a spouse that loves you unconditionally. To have beautiful, amazing children you are able to watch mature into successful adults. To see your grandchildren’s expressions on Christmas, and watch as they grow into wonderful teenagers. And to have a successful career, a warm home, a strong faith and a life with no regrets. Sam had all of these things.

He was a U.S. Army veteran, serving nine years in the U.S. Army Reserve. During this time, he was a member of the XII U.S. Army Corps Rifle team that won the 1964 National Championship. Sam was a member of the EAA (Experimental Aircraft Association) Chapter 297 and a QB Gone West.

He was a graduate of University of Tennessee with a B.S. Degree in Mechanical Engineering and worked for Dupont until his retirement. He was a loyal member of Wesley United Methodist Church, serving many positions.

Other than his family and friends, Sam had two main passions, flying and photography. Since arriving in Wilmington in 1971, he photographed many weddings and other events.

A celebration of life will be held at 3 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 16, at Wesley UMC, 1401 South College Road. The family will receive friends in the gathering hall from 2 to 3 p.m. prior to services.

The family would like to thank Lower Cape Hospice for their loving care.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to EAA Chapter 297, 107 Aviator Lane, Burgaw, NC 28425; or Wesley UMC. Through the EAA, Sam flew over 200 Young Eagles, and scholarships will be given in his honor to continue the Young Eagles program.

Share online condolences with the family at Andrews Mortuary & Crematory.

Related Articles