Obituary & Services: Paul Adron Rowoth

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Paul Adron Rowoth obit photoPaul Adron Rowoth stepped into Heaven on Monday, January 15, 2024. He was born on the family farm in rural Grundy County, Missouri on May 11, 1932. As the youngest of Joseph and Alpha’s eight children, Paul’s childhood was spent in the shadows of the Great Depression and World War II. He learned to love God, work hard, had a natural curiosity about the world around him, and was usually behind mischievous pranks played on his sisters. His first eight years of schooling took place in a one-room schoolhouse not far from his home. He then attended Trenton Junior High School where he met the love of his life, Joanne Rooks. They began dating in high school when Joanne asked him to go with her to a hayride sponsored by Girl’s Athletic Association. It was meant to be just as Mickey was meant for Minnie. They graduated from Trenton High School in May of 1950 and were married that December on Christmas Eve.

Paul attended Trenton Junior College for one year and then went into partnership with a dairy farm. For 16 years he was up before sunrise, milking cows and doing chores. During this time, Joanne and he had four children: Leah, Brenda, Bryan, and Andrea. He was devoted to his family and because of this devotion, decided to pursue higher education. Paul and Joanne moved their young family (and a child on the way, Julia) to Columbia, Missouri so Paul could attend the University of Missouri. Not long after gaining employment from the university, Paul was involved in a serious equipment accident which resulted in a half-body cast for 8 months. Not deterred, he continued to hobble to class on crutches, tucking his books into his belt. God brought a caring nurse who invited Paul and his family to church. Forum Christian Church, then known as Westside Christian Church, became a place to grow in the Lord, serve, love, and be loved. Over the next 55 years, Paul served on the missions committee, as a youth group sponsor, adult bible teacher, deacon, and elder. He also served on the board of Christian Campus House, was active in Central Missouri Church Evangelizers, and served forty years as a forwarding agent for the Chinese Christian Mission.

Paul received his Bachelor of Science in Agriculture degree from the University of Missouri in May 1969 and his Master of Science in Crop Science in May 1973. He finished his time as a student just a few hours shy of his doctorate. He remained an eager learner for the rest of his life and taught his children to be curious about the world. He worked in the Agronomy department at MU for over 35 years.

Paul never knew a stranger. He enjoyed offering hospitality to international students, campus house kids, and anyone the family brought home. He was generous and kind. Whatever job there was to do, he did it to the best of his ability.

A committed and loving husband, Paul and Joanne celebrated 73 years of marriage on Christmas Eve 2023. Together they traveled extensively across the United States, Canada, Alaska, Hawaii, and Taiwan. They raised their family to love God, embrace adventure, and find wonder in the smallest of creations. He thrived outdoors, whether gardening or hiking, fresh air and good soil gave him joy. Family gatherings with Paul often included board games, dominoes or cards. He was a formidable opponent in a Chinese Checkers match and always had multiple flavors of ice cream quarts in the deep freeze to make your defeat more palatable. In his second half of life, the Lord expanded the Rowoth tribe with grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He was always interested in their lives, prayed for them daily, and shared whatever he had to make their lives better. This, of course, often included more ice cream or candy. He left them a legacy of faith, sacrifice, strength, and love.

Paul was first of all a follower of Jesus Christ. His life was a testament to the love of God for a broken world. It was his desire to “run the race marked out” for him in a way that honored the Lord. He has indeed run well. Now he is safely home.

“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.” Hebrews 6:19a

Paul was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph and Alpha Rowoth, four sisters and three brothers and their spouses, son and daughter-in-law, Bryan and Amber Rowoth, grandson, I.B. Fugate III, and great-grandson, Dylan Fugate. He is survived by his wife, Joanne. Also survived by daughters, Leah Fugate (Florissant, MO), Randy and Brenda Dolan (Columbia, MO), Brian and Andrea High (Norfolk, NE), Mike and Julia Harney (New Berlin, IL), 17 grandchildren, and 21 great-grandchildren.

Services will be held at Forum Christian Church, 3900 Forum Blvd., Columbia, MO 65203 Saturday, January 20, 2024, Visitation 1:30 PM; Service 2:30 PM. Graveside service will be in Honey Creek Chapel Cemetery, 333 St. Hwy NN, Trenton, MO 64683 on Monday, January 22, 2024, at 12 PM.

Memorial gifts may be sent to Show-Me Christian Youth Home 24302 Mahin Rd., La Monte, MO 65337, or Shiloh Christian Children’s Ranch 601 N. Center Street, P.O. Box 606, Shelbina, MO 63468

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