Barbara Cowan Howell, who resided in Par Village near De Leon, Texas passed away after a lengthy battle with Alzheimer’s Disease on April 19, 2021.

Barbara was born November 25, 1935 in College Station, Texas. Her family settled in De Leon, Texas where she graduated from De Leon High School in 1954. Barbara married her high school sweetheart, Robert Gene Howell, MD (Bob). They moved to Dallas where she gave birth to two sons, Mark and Mike. After Bob completed Medical School they moved to Big Spring where she gave birth to her daughter, Kay. The couple then moved to Knox City, Texas and resided there from 1963-1982. While raising her children in Knox City, Barbara was also actively involved in the First United Methodist Church and organized and participated in multiple social and community services. They moved to Wichita Falls for a few years before retiring to the De Leon/Par Village area. She served her community again through her volunteer service with United Methodist Church of De Leon. Barbara became a certified Master Gardener through the Texas Master Gardener Program of Texas A&M. She was a textile artist; embroidering, sewing, quilting, and knitting and won blue ribbons for her paintings.

Barbara is survived by her husband of 66 years, R.G. Howell, MD (Bob); two sons and a daughter and their spouses: John Mark Howell and wife, Joy, of Decatur; R. Michael Howell, MD and wife, Jana, of Fort Worth; and Kay Howell Rutherford and husband, Jay, of Aledo. Barbara (Mimi) was also survived by eight grandchildren: Kristen Howell Riches and husband, Alan, of Ruidosa; Casey Howell Yoesting and husband, Tyler, of Richardson; Collin Howell and wife, Katie, of Fort Worth; Cayla Howell of Fort Worth; Connor Howell of Fort Worth; Anne Rutherford Stephenson and husband, Bryan, of San Francisco; Audrey Rutherford, MD of Dallas; and Ross Rutherford of Houston. “Mimi” also has four great grandchildren: James Riches, Ellis Riches, Miller Yoesting, and Beck Howell. Barbara has one surviving sibling, Glenda Garza.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Hazel Huddleston Cowan and Melvin Lawrence Cowan; brother, Mel Cowan; granddaughter, Ashley Rutherford; and grandson, Boone Rutherford.

We wish to thank the staff of Colonial Gardens of Fort Worth for their exceptional care for the last four years and to Candy Meck Buckley for her loving attention to Barbara when she was still at home.

A celebration of life graveside service was held in De Leon Cemetery Saturday, April 24, 2021, at 1 p.m. with Rev. John Woodard officiating. If desired memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association in her memory. Condolences may be offered online at

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