Eugene Ray Bowers

January 11, 1937 ‒ June 09, 2019

Delaware, Ohio

Eugene “Gene” Ray Bowers, 82, of Zanesville, Ohio, and formerly of Delaware, Ohio and Fort Myers, Florida, passed away peacefully Sunday, June 9, 2019 at Delaware Court Health Center.

“Mean Gene,” as he was lovingly referred to by friends, family, and fans, was born January 11, 1937, the son of the late Clarence & Evelyn (Pletcher) Bowers. Gene graduated from Zanesville High School and proudly served in The United States Army in Korea. After being honorably discharged from the Army Reserves in 1966, he went on to work for Ohio Bell as a cost projection engineer. He was a life-long member of the Moose, Eagles, AMVETS, VFW, American Legion and the Telephone Pioneers in Delaware and a member of the Veterans Club of America in Fort Myers.

Gene was a fun, sometimes stubborn individual, who loved to golf and hangout at the beach. Once retired, Gene and his wife, Sharon, became “snow birds,” spending summers in Delaware and winters in Fort Myers until they relocated permanently in 1998. After Sharon’s passing in 2008, Gene spent nearly every day at the beach-front restaurant, Pete’s Time Out, siting at table 23 “holding court,” chatting with the “local yokels,” and representing the great state of Ohio by hollering “O-H” at passersby. Gene became such a fixture at Pete’s that in 2018, fellow Pete’s regulars started a podcast called “Beach Talk Radio” featuring Gene opening and closing the show. His proudest achievement in his life, however, was his family.

He is survived by his daughter Linda K. (Michael) Tomkies; grandchildren Brittany, Mallory, Kimberly, and Michael (Hannah) Tomkies; sister Sharon Lee Bowers.

He was preceded in death by his parents, wife, and brother Donald Bowers.

Funeral services celebrating Gene’s life will be held 2:00 pm Wednesday, June 12, 2019 at Snyder-Rodman Funeral Center, 101 Valleyside Dr. at W. William St., Delaware, Ohio, 43015 where family and friends may call from 1:00 pm until the time of the service. Burial will follow in Oak Grove Cemetery, were military honors will be provided by the Delaware County Veterans Association.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed towards Capital City Hospice (614) 441-9300.

Condolences may be expressed at

  • To Gene’s family – we met him just as the story goes – walking to Pete’s on Ft Myers Beach with my Ohio State T shirt. Gene yells OH! I shouted back IO! That was a couple years ago and each of the half dozen times we made it back to Ft Myers, the one person we always looked forward to meeting was Gene! He was so proud of his family.

    Always a Joy!

    Steve & Susie McFarland
    Peebles, Oh
    OSU Engrg Class of 1987

  • Some of my childhood days were spent in Zanesville. On some visits we would visit, to my delight, the handsome boys . Such a crush…even at three years younger. Lost total touch, but have always remembered as they wrote to my grandmother Opal a couple of times. My thoughts and prayers are with you as the family celebrates a good man. I am the granddaughter of Opal and Bert Pletcher My “daddy” Bert was Eugene’s uncle.

  • Sharon & family, Frank & I are so very sorry to hear of Gene’s passing. Please know you are in our thoughts and prayers.

  • I’m very sorry to hear of Gene’s passing. I haven’t seen Gene for probably 40 years but I will never forget the time we spent together on the golf course back in the 70’s. I also fondly remember the euchre games at lunchtime in the XBT/3CL break room at Ohio Bell.
    I’m very sorry for your loss.

  • Sometimes owning a restaurant/bar can get overwhelming, stressful and just wear you down. But when customers come along who love your place it makes up for that.
    Gene Bowers was one of those customers. He loved Pete’s. He came every day / I mean every day. He loved the people at Pete’s. It was his “Cheers”. He became a part of the Beach Talk Radio podcast. Signing on and off for them every Saturday. He literally “loved” Pete’s. He was always out front meeting people and just absorbing it all. Beer drinking in the morning. He loved it.
    Today is Gene’s funeral in OHIO. He will be buried in his Pete’s shirt. His family made a video of his life and watching it made us realize what our place meant to him. It was eye opening. Gene, the way you loved Pete’s is why we keep hanging in there. You make us want to be there for all the “Gene’s” out there.
    In your loyalty, you made us understand what one place can be to customers!
    You are missed Gene and will continue to be missed. We hope in your afterlife you are meeting up with all the past “GOB’s” of Pete’s and you are all having beers and swapping tall tales.
    So today if you can/ sometime have a beer and toast Mean Gene!

  • Linda and family,
    I want to express my deepest sympathies for the loss of your father. What an amazing fun loving man he was. I’ll think of him everyday on my way to work when I pass by table 23 at Pete’s with a smile in my heart. I can still hear him telling me to work faster, work harder, work smarter.