James Floyd Lowder, 87, passed away on the morning of Friday, April 3rd, 2020, at his home in Amarillo. He was surrounded by family and died peacefully with his loving wife of 48 years at his side and holding his hand.
Jim is survived by his wife, Nelda, and his children and their families: James and Naly Lowder, David Lowder, Tracy and Scott Hearon, Debbie and Duane McGarraugh, Dr. Pamela Parker, and Kim Sledge, along with seventeen grandchildren and sixteen great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, Lee and Grace Lowder, his older brother Lee, and his younger sister Marjorie.
Visitation will be at Boxwell Brothers Funeral Home on Tuesday, April 7 from 5:30 to 7:30 PM. Graveside services will be held at Llano Cemetery on Wednesday, April 8 at 2:00 pm. Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd., Amarillo.
Jim was a third generation rancher and cattleman. He was born in Osage City, Kansas, and grew up on the Lowder Ranch in Lyon County, where he became an expert cowboy and horseman at an early age. He graduated a year early as valedictorian from Allen High School and went on to attend Kansas State University (then Kansas State College), where he was a leader on both the collegiate rodeo and livestock judging teams and served in the Air Force ROTC unit.
As a member of the Kansas State Rodeo Team, Jim competed in multiple events, including calf roping and saddle bronc riding. At the 1951 Grand National Livestock and Rodeo Exhibition at the Cow Palace in San Francisco, he helped his team place third, and continued to actively maintain and enjoy his cowboy skills well into his professional life.
Jim graduated from Kansas State with a B.S. degree in Animal Husbandry. Immediately after graduating college, he was called up for further training as an Air Force supply officer, after which he deployed to Korea and then Japan from 1953 to 1956. He finished his military career as a 1st Lieutenant.
Mr. Lowder was a successful cattleman and a leader in the cattle industry in Kansas, Texas, and Oklahoma for several decades. He was mentored by some of the best in the cattle business. In turn, he gave back by serving on the board of directors of the Texas Cattle Feeders Association and by mentoring future leaders in the industry.
Along the way, Jim and Nelda picked up a love of golf. He and Nelda loved to play golf, travel, entertain and meet new friends. They have cherished family and friends and are grateful for the many, many wonderful people who have become their friends over the years.