Byron R. (Bappe) Bowen, 86, born to Lela Ila Edwards and Victor Rollin Bappe, a longtime Ellensburg resident, passed away on Tuesday, May 9, 2023 at the Kittitas Valley Hospital. A graveside service with military honors will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Monday, May 22, 2023 at the IOOF Cemetery in Ellensburg.
Byron was born on February 24, 1937 in Seattle, Washington. He grew up in the Puget Sound area where he completed his schooling. Following high school, he enlisted in the United States Army, serving for two years before his honorable discharge in 1957. Upon his return home from the service, Byron enrolled at Central Washington University while also working part time milking cows for a local farmer. It was through that job that he met his future wife of nearly 63 years - Shirley Ann Zuppe - who happened to be the farmer’s daughter. The two hit it off and they were married on June 18, 1960.
Following his graduation from CWU in 1961 with his bachelor’s degree in English, Byron and Shirley moved to Chehalis and Byron commuted daily to a teaching position in Longview. They later moved to Fife and eventually back to Ellensburg in 1967 and have called the Kittitas Valley home since that time. Byron returned to CWU and earned his master’s degree in English in 1975.
Byron was a man of many talents including teaching, farming, concrete work and writing. He was a substitute teacher for many years and also raised beef cattle. He enjoyed researching different topics - mostly in the realm of science and history. Not one who really enjoyed flying, Byron very much enjoyed the road trips that he and his family would take to visit relatives in Iowa.
Byron is survived by his wife, Shirley, at the family home in Ellensburg; children Debra Lynn (John) Kay of Des Moines, Washington, David Byron (Lisa) Bowen of Ellensburg and Tram Christopher (Stacey) Bowen of Graham, Washington; grandchildren Jessica, Ryan, Shayna and Shonn and great grandchildren Adeline and Riley. He is also survived by his brother, William (Jackie) Bappe-Bowen of Auburn and sister, Dorothy (Bowen) Shaffer of Seattle and numerous nieces and nephews.
Byron was preceded in death by his parents and siblings Stanley, Virginia, and Cecil.
Memorial contributions in Byron’s honor are suggested to the Ellensburg Presbyterian Church, 1307 E. Third Avenue, Ellensburg, WA 98926.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Johnston & Williams Funeral Home of Ellensburg. Online condolences may be left at www.johnston-williams.com