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(November 29, 1927 – May 11, 2016)

Evan I. ?Ç£Pete?Ç¥ Sowles, 88, of Midland, went home to be with his Lord and Savior on Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at Brookdale Senior Living. He was born in Levering, Michigan on November 29, 1927 to the late Walter and Dellaman (Belanger) Sowles. On April 26, 1952 he married the love of his life, Mazie Burnett.Pete served his country honorably in the U.S. Army during WWII. During his lifetime Pete enjoyed a variety of employment but his favorite job was road construction. Pete was a member of Calvary Baptist Church, helping to build the original church on Cherry Street, teaching Sunday School, serving as a deacon and as a member of a men’s prayer team. Believing education was important, he was active in his children’s early schooling, which included serving as the president of the Forest Schools PTA (Auburn). The Sowles home was a favorite place for neighborhood kids, since Pete made sure there was a lot for his children to do at home. There was a ball field, hobby farm animals and pets, a school-sized swingset with a Tarzan rope, a whirly-gig, play house and swimming pool. He worked as a volunteer counselor for the Partnership for a Drug Free Youth program. Pete was a member of the Sanford American Legion, the Michigan Republican Party and the NRA. For over 30 years he was a member of Gideons International, involved in their work of distributing scripture locally and around the world. During retirement, Pete and Mazie volunteered through RVICS (Roving Volunteers in Christ’s Service), a non-denominational Christian group, traveling through the south and southwest working at Christian camps and schools.Pete enjoyed the outdoors, hunting, fishing, gardening, landscaping, horses, woodworking and puttering in his garage. His favorite get-away was up north on his 80 acres in Emmet County, and he loved taking friends and family there to enjoy it with him.Pete is survived by his wife, Mazie, his children Marcia (Gary) Visscher, Mark (Trudy) Sowles and son-in-law Duane (Jane) Moe; grandchildren Benjamin (Brooke) Fitch, Elizabeth (Jake) Reeves, Amanda (Phil) Denny, Mark (Shana) Sowles, Jr., Emily (Bobby) Herbold, Alison Sowles, Rachel (Robin) Strait, Emily Moe and Kevin Moe; great- grandchildren Beckett and Bennett Fitch, Turner, Stratton and Mara Reeves, Dreux and Brayden Denny, McKinzi, Lake and Tucker Sowles, Cooper and Riley Herbold, Shayla (Will) Fisher, Brooklyne (Eric) O?ÇÖSullivan, Quinn Doering, Katherine (Matthew) Miller, Trevin and Serenity Reddo, Jade and Dakota O’Sullivan and one great-great grandchild, Aurora Fisher, born on his 88th birthday. He is also survived by his brother Jim (Kitty) Sowles.Pete was preceded in death by his daughter, Colleen Moe, step father Henry Frook, brothers Virgil, Edgar and Milton Sowles, sisters Marjorie Brown and Millicent Wilson.A memorial service will take place at 11:00 a.m. on July 30th, 2016 at Calvary Baptist Church with the Rev. Paul Murphrey officiating. Those considering an expression of sympathy are asked to consider the Gideons International.Smith-Miner Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements. On line condolences can be left at smithminer.com