Michael Earl “Mike” Dowell
Michael Earl “Mike” Dowell was born June 17, 1950 in Alexandria, LA to Clarence and Virginia Dowell. Mike lived in Alexandria through the sixth grade at which time his parents moved the family to Greenville, MS to open a Burger Chef franchise. Three years later, the family sold the store and moved to Jackson, MS where his parents lived the remainder of their lives.
Mike began his high school career at Murrah High School and graduated from Callaway High School in 1968.During his high school career, Mike made lifelong friends with whom he enjoyed planning dual class Murrah/Calloway class reunions.
Upon graduation from Callaway, Mike worked several jobs to put himself through Hinds Jr. College. While at Hinds, he met another friend for life, his roommate, George Warriner. The two became fast friends and apparently entered into a vow of secrecy regarding their escapades. No matter how hard their families tried to pry out the stories, few were ever revealed and none in its entirety. Mike finished his undergraduate degrees, Math and Business, at Mississippi College in 1972 and would later be awarded Outstanding Mathematics Alumnus.
Upon graduation from MC, Mike married Roberta Sours and went to work for Deposit Guaranty National Bank while simultaneously meeting the demands of his Uncle Sam in the Army National Guard wherein he was, of course, a member of the finance unit “aka. The Fighting Finance”. Here too, deep friendships were made and even deeper shenanigans with the likes of Bill Sones and Tom Bertaut, both of whom Mike deeply loved and respected and both of whom were also skilled secret keepers.
Mike was blessed with many deep friendships over the years. It is no surprise that many of these friendships were born out of a mutual love for the great outdoors. Mike loved to hunt and fish. You could usually find him with Mike Grove, Kyle Ball, George Warriner, Matt Holleman, David Penton, Bob Sauer, Thomas Maley and many more. Mike was an outdoorsman and a conservationist. He hunted and fished across the world, always seeking the next opportunity to bag “Mr. Big”. To those who knew him, he was a true outdoorsman and always bagged his query, earning him the nickname “The Slammer”.
Mike and Roberta were blessed with an earth angel named Michael Sours “Mack” Dowell in 1978. Mike and Mack shared many fond memories together. Mike traveled to many soccer games and oversaw many training sessions. While not a soccer fan, Mike spent a lot of time learning the sport for his son.
In 1986 Mike married the love of his life Melanie Ann Walker. The unlikely couple met at Merrill Lynch and had an immediate dislike for each other. Mike was viewed as a jerk and Melanie was viewed as an “Ole Miss Rooty Toot”. However, after the two worked together and developed a mutual respect, their relationship blossomed into 34 years of marital “bliss”. The longevity of their marriage was in part owed to the counseling efforts of Robyn Chunn, lifelong colleague and close friend.
Mike and Melanie added two sons to the family Preston in 1989 and Walker in 1991. Mike and Melanie lived most of their married life in Ridgeland, MS. raising men and building a business together. Mike served on the Catholic Foundation board investment committee for almost 3 decades, the board of the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Ms. and was instrumental in helping launch The Redeemer’s School in Jackson. Mike attended First Presbyterian Church from 2009 as long as his health permitted and very much enjoyed his Sunday School class, a new experience for a cradle Catholic. Mike’s greatest source of comfort and joy were his family and deep faith in the Holy Trinity.
Mike’s passion, after faith, family and the great outdoors, was the financial markets in which he enjoyed a successful 47 year career. Mike retired from Morgan Stanley in February 2019 leaving a legacy for his clients and family alike. Mike earned national recognition for his success from such publications as Forbes, Barron’s, The Financial Times, and the Mississippi Business Journal but his greatest reward was his two youngest sons joining the family business.
Mike is survived by his wife of 34 years, Melanie W. Dowell, his sons Mack (Maggie), Preston Dowell and Walker. Grandchildren Heath Dowell, Logan Dowell, Anna Riley Dowell and Millie Gallarno, his brother Clarence Earl Dowell, Jr. and his sister Constance “Connie” Adcox and nephew Mark Adcox (Tina) and Cassandra Adcox Garrett (Matthew) 4 great nephews.
The family would like to extend a special thanks to our health care heroes over the years: Ruth Fredericks, Missy Johnson and Brenda Turner.
Due to the current pandemic, services will be held graveside on Wednesday, November 18, 2020 at Parkway Memorial Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to The Redeemer’s School or a charity of your choice.
The Redeemer’s School Attention: Jewell Hillary 640 E Northside Drive Jackson, MS 39206 601-203-2106 www.wearetrs.org