WARREN, Ohio – Paul Robert McDowell, 96, of Warren passed away peacefully with his family by his side at 7:15 a.m. Thursday August 18, 2016 following a short illness.
Paul was born Feb. 21, 1920 in Bristolville the son of the late Zoe (Harsh) and Earl McDowell. He was a life-long resident of Trumbull County and graduated from Bristol High School in 1938.
Paul joined the Army Air Corps shortly after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor in December 1941, interrupting his college years at Ohio Northern University. He earned several medals of distinction as a combat pilot for the 438 Bomb Squadron, 319th Bombing Group based on the island of Sardinia and flew 70 bombing missions over Italy and France. Captain McDowell’s plane was hit by enemy fire multiple times, but he was always able to bring his crew back safely.
In 1943 he flew to North Africa and while temporarily stationed in Tunisia, he assisted in the training of non-English speaking French pilots.
Paul attended several yearly 319th Bomb Group Air Force reunions taking his family with him. He was extremely proud to have served in the military. In 2012 Paul and his family visited the Wright Patterson Air Force Museum where they house a B-26. He fondly reminisced with his great grandchildren at the controls of the aircraft and told them of his missions during WWII.
After the War, Paul worked for May Department Stores in the Strouss’ Division in Youngstown. He attained the rank of Vice-President and retired in 1983. He enjoyed spending his winters in Fort Myers Beach, FL with his wife Miriam.
His wife Miriam (McElravy) McDowell whom he married January 13, 1943 preceded him in death August 27, 2015. He also was preceded in death by a brother Raymond.
He is survived by his son Terry (Vivian) McDowell of Howland, his daughter Judy (Wayne) Berger of Fort Myers Beach, FL, and two sisters Katherine Schoenfeld of Steubenville and Zoe Alice Ambrosia of Austintown. He also leaves 3 grandchildren Kimberly (Fred) Boulton, Mindy (Chad) King, Charles (Jennifer) Dann, 7 great grandchildren; Ryan, Jake, Madeline, Evan, Alex, Ellie, Jaxson, and numerous nieces and nephews.
The family would like to extend their sincere thanks to all the staff at Autumn Hills Manor and Autumn Hills Care Center Home for their kindness and special care.
Private services will be held Saturday, August 20 at Lane Family Funeral Homes Roberts-Clark Chapel.
The family suggests material contributions be made to Senior Independence Hospice 6715 Tippecanoe Rd. Canfield, OH 44406.
A television tribute will air Friday, August 19 at the following approximate times:
6:41 a.m. WYTV, 8:41 a.m. MyYTV, 9:58 a.m. on FOX, 12:25 p.m. WKBN, 6:58 p.m. on MyYTV and 10:37 p.m. FOX.