Johnny Bowen

Jonathon Nicholas Bowen

Hard worker, pure heart, always smiling, athletic.

Everyone always called him “Johnny,” as he grew up in Calvert County, Maryland.

He was born in Prince Frederick to Catherine “Cathi” Williams and Jesse Bowen, but he was raised in Lusby, Maryland and briefly attended Patuxent High School.

His mother, Cathi, recalls how cute he was as a small boy with blonde, curly hair that was his trademark for a time. As a toddler he got a chuckle out of opening the refrigerator and dropping eggs one-by-one onto the floor and charming the grownups who saw it.

One treasured photograph was taken of Johnny and his curly, blonde hair at the age of 3, along with the minister at Huntingtown United Methodist Church. It was taken when Johnny was ring bearer at his aunt’s wedding in the old family church.

“Those are good memories,” said his mother, Cathi.

Johnny and his siblings, including brothers, Jeremiah and Jesse, and sisters, Jennifer and Julia, were big sports fans and players. His favorite big-league team was the Washington Redskins, but he loved his youth league teams as well. Johnny played T-ball and Little League and also Junior Football for a team called the Solomon’s Steelers. His sisters were cheerleaders for the Solomon’s Steelers team.

He was the life of every party and was fun to be around. He liked to help other people and was well-behaved when visiting friends.

He was quite intelligent, but never really applied himself in school, preferring instead to be the class clown, which led to misbehavior and trouble with teachers and administrators. He dropped out of public school in the seventh grade, returning briefly for his 9th grade year.

His mother home-schooled him and Johnny eventually got his G.E.D. Meanwhile, he learned how to become a roofer from another man in the business. He worked as a carpenter or a roofer off and on for nearly 20 years. At the same time, he was living with addiction that resulted in some jail time and some sober time along the way.

Since his death in May of 2019, his mother has found solace in returning to her childhood church in Huntingtown. She joined the church choir and is happy to be home again.

Johnny’s mother, Cathi, provided information for this profile.

Aug. 1, 1985 – May 23, 2019
Age 33
Lived with addiction 20 years.

Share this story from The INTO LIGHT Project


More Into Light Stories

Read more biographies from this exhibit.
Devin Hart Bearden

Devin Hart Bearden

Caring, athletic, bright, witty, attractive At 6’2”, Devin was lanky, handsome, and a natural athlete. Equally at home on a skateboard, snowboard, or when surfing, he was a pleasure to watch; so fluid and graceful. He was a good soccer and baseball player and loved hiking in nature or being at the beach, especially on the annual family beach trips to Hatteras in North Carolina. [...]
Read More »
Mariah Albee

Mariah Albee

Joyous, generous, loving, artistic. Mariah grew up as the only child of Valerie and Richard Albee in Severna Park, Maryland. She attended a Montessori school at age 3 and excelled. “Her childhood was remarkable,” said Mariah’s mother, Valerie.[...]
Read More »
Jimmy Alderman

Jimmy Alderman

Easy-going, loyal, prankster, thrill-seeker He was a firecracker as a child – a bit hard-headed, but playful. He loved Superman and often dressed up in a Superman costume and paraded around the house. Never actually outgrowing his superhero friend, Jimmy even donned a Superman outfit for his 30th birthday.[...]
Read More »
Michael Bixby

Michael Bixby

Artistic, intelligent, inventive, Charismatic, random story teller When Mike was nine months old, he could walk, talk and draw. From that point on he drew his way through life, using his talent as a way to process problems or express feelings, and to make people happy.[...]
Read More »

Bring an Exhibit to Your State