John “Jody” “Joe” Oehler Mowrer III, 75, passed away on Saturday, January 16, at his home in Hixson, Tennessee. He was surrounded by his loving and dedicated wife of 50 years, Shannon (Bonner), son John IV, and daughter Allison. He also left behind his son-in-law, Michael Jeffries and adored grandson, Rory Oehler Mowrer-Jeffries.
Born June 30, 1945 in Concord, NC to John Oehler, Jr. and Katrine (Kindley), Jody had lived in Chattanooga since 1972. He proudly played football for the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. He was a member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Chattanooga where he played for the softball team in the ‘80s and ushered for many years. He was a founding member of the Choo Choo Shag Club where he spent many hours happily dancing with his wife to his favorite music. Jody was a former salesman for Industrial Rubber and Safety Products. He used to drive 1000 miles a week throughout eastern Tennessee and Alabama, but always made it home for supper.
Jody was loved by his two younger brothers (Larry Conrad and James) and their wives (Kathy and Sharon). He also leaves behind five sets of brothers-/sisters-in-law who loved him dearly: the Rev. John H. Bonner III (Deborah), Polly Bonner Roper (John), Hannah Bonner Fowler (Hubert), Paul Bonner (Barbara), and Bess Bonner Steverson (Bill). He will also be missed for his animal sounds, silly faces, hugs, jokes, and silver dollars by his many nieces, nephews, and godchildren. Jody’s friends from work, church, or his favorite sports bar will miss his vast sports knowledge, (sometimes inappropriate) jokes, and natural, kind smile.
Jody hated very few things: 1) Duke, 2) people who called him “friend” but didn’t know his name, 3) NC State, 4) pickles on a hamburger, and 5) Wake Forest. He loved many, many things: 1) his family, 2) UNC Chapel Hill (“Go Heels!”), 3) every dog he ever met (it was mutual), 4) UNC basketball, 5) dancing the Carolina shag, 6) Dean Smith, 7) watching a thunderstorm roll in (especially over the ocean), 8) Roy Williams, 9) NASCAR, 10) Jimmy Braddock, 11) Dale Earnhardt (Sr and Jr), 12) UNC football, 13) grilling chicken with vinegar barbecue sauce, 14) Mack Brown, 15) fooling people with a good riddle, 16) watching UNC sports of all kinds (even soccer and lacrosse), 17) March Madness and filling out his bracket by hand, 18) Michael Jordan (though he wasn’t a huge fan of the NBA) 19) the Atlanta Braves, 20) PGA golf, 21) resting his eyes while watching sports (he was not sleeping and you better not turn the channel), 22) playing Bridge and other card games, 23) flirting with every waitress he ever met, 24) telling jokes and stories to make people laugh, and so, so much more. His infectious laugh could fill a room, no matter the size.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you make a donation to Hospice of Chattanooga in honor of his awesome helpers (George, Andrea, Gwen, and Faedra) or St. Paul’s Outreach Grant Fund. A private graveside service will be held for the family. We will celebrate Jody’s life later in the year when we can all get together and tell stories, laugh, dance, and eat barbecue--just like he would have wanted.