ELIZA ANN POWERS BOWSER was born on December 11, 1921, in Halifax County, North Carolina, to the late Harvey Powers and Annie Hicks Powers. She transitioned from this earthly life to her Heavenly home on Thursday, July 27, 2017, at her home in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, with her loving family and dear friends near her side.
During her early life, Eliza accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior, was baptized, and joined the Carter’s Chapel Baptist Church in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina. She and her family moved to the newly established London Baptist Church at the old London School on Highway 158, Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina. A new church was soon built on that present site. She was a dedicated member of London and held many bake sales, stews, and special programs to help build the new church. When fire destroyed that structure, she was instrumental in helping with projects to rebuild that church which is where the present London Baptist Church now stands.
She has worked tirelessly at her church in the service for the Lord for over seven decades, and through the years, she has served in numerous capacities including, Chairperson of the Deaconess Ministry, Missionary Ministry, and Program Committee, Finance Secretary, Sunday School Assistant Superintendent, Sunday school teacher from beginner to junior classes, Baptist Training Union teacher, Superintendent of Vacation Bible School, Coordinator of “5-A-Day” Program, President of the Sunshine Band, NAACP Mother of the Year for four years, which took her to the state level in Raleigh, North Carolina, and a faithful Bible Study member. She also held positions in the Halifax County Missionary Union, the Neuse River Baptist Association, and in the past, she served as secretary of the Shearins Chapel Baptist Church for over ten years. Eliza was well-loved in her church and highly respected in the community.
Her formal education was obtained in the Halifax County Public School System, and she graduated from the former John Armstrong Chaloner High School with the class of 1939. She was the first one in her family to complete high school.
On June 10, 1939, Eliza was united in Holy Matrimony to the love of her life, James Bowser, who preceded her in death after forty-six years of marriage. God blessed this union with four children, James, Sally Ann, Mamie, and Annie. She was a faithful, devoted wife and mother whose steadfast Christian values and beliefs became the compelling influence and the stabilizing force in her family.
She relocated to Goldsboro, North Carolina, with her husband who in the United States Army stationed at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base. Upon their return home, Eliza became employed in the domestic industry for two local families and served at many dinner parties for prominent families. She worked at the J. P. Stevens and Company cafeteria in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, was a teacher’s assistant at the former Ralph J. Bunch Elementary School in Weldon, North Carolina, and also worked in the library at Weldon Elementary School. During that time, she attended Saturday certification classes at East Carolina University and Halifax Community College. In 1982, she retired from the Weldon Public School System after eighteen years of ardent, loyal service.
In addition to her parents and husband, she was also preceded in death by her infant daughter, Sally Ann Bowser; her brothers, Maryland and James Hardy Powers; and her sisters, Ever Lee Powers, Hazel Powers-McCoy, and Louise Powers-Tillery.
Her sweet spirit lives today and forever more in the hearts of her children, James Howard Bowser (Shirley) of Pensacola, FL, Mamie Bowser-Bennett (Percy) of Pinehurst, NC, and Annie Bowser-Henderson of Roanoke Rapids, NC; Two sisters, Sally Powers-Faulcon, and Laura Powers- Newell; her grandchildren, Terry Bowser (Angela), Sherry Anderson, Devona Solsberry-Hinsley, Roderick Bennett (Patricia), Veronica Bennett-Gregory (Marcus), Gregory Bennett (Michele), Raymont Henderson (Jamie), Cheryl Richardson, and Tracy Henderson; fourteen great-grandchildren; five great-great-grandchildren; her children of the heart, Mozella Alston, Rev. Maxine Bradley-Caine, Elizabeth Thomas, Twana Burnette, and Martha Stallings; and many loving nieces, nephews, other relatives, friends, and neighbors.
Funeral services will be held at 1:00 P.M. on Thursday, August 3, 2017, at the London Missionary Baptist Church, 3386 US Highway 158, Roanoke Rapids, NC. The Pastor, Rev. Elbert Lee, will eulogize, and Rev. Maxine Bradley Caine will preside. Burial will follow in the church cemetery. The body will repose at the funeral home until 8:30 P.M. on Wednesday, August 2, 2017, and at the church for one hour prior to the funeral time.