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Cowick, Gay Louise

Cowick, Gay Louise

January 5, 1937 — October 14, 2021

Gay Louise (Richeson) Cowick died peacefully on October 14, 2021.

Gay was born on January 5, 1937, in Kansas City, KS, to Charles and Kate Richeson. Gay was the third of five children. She was held back in grade school when she suffered from rheumatic fever and spent over a year in and out of the hospital. When she graduated high school from Manual High, she was so proud to graduate at the top of her class. Gay started working as a secretary when she was 17 for KC Bond and Employment Agency, and she continued this job for the next 14 years.

Gay loved children and adored being an Aunt to her sibling’s kids. She was a second mother to many of them. Gay was living with her mother and younger brother in 1960 when she met a young drummer, John Douglas Cowick (Doug). Doug and Gay were married May 12, 1962. Gay and Doug had three children during their 58 years of marriage and they went on many adventures together. They lived a year in Hawaii when their kids were young and they went on trips to China, Greece and Mexico, to name a few. There were numerous times when they could be spotted dancing together in their house or on the street corner while listening to a local artist.

In order to spend time with their kids, Gay would babysit for extra money. Their house was always full of kids whether it was from babysitting or one of Doug’s nine younger siblings, nieces and nephews, neighbor kids or friends of their children. Gay loved to sing with her kids and would fill the house and car with music and laughter. She never cared if she was off key. She just enjoyed spending time being with her family. Gay was very active in her children’s lives. She was always Head Room Mother and spent many years as a Campfire Girl’s leader for her daughter and her friends. Gay never missed a game that her children would play,and this continued during high school and even as adults. She was also very crafty and loved to sew, crochet and knit. Her children’s homes are full of decorations that Gay has crafted through the years.

Gay and Doug put their three kids through 12 years of Catholic education and their love of sports provided them with a special bond, especially when it came time to watching some of their favorite teams like KU and the Kansas City Chiefs. The Cowick’s home was always one for celebration and themed parties, which included Toga Parties, Chinese Dinners, Christmas in July celebrations and countless back yard BBQs. Doug and Gay were avid UMKC fans when they started Division 1 Men’s Basketball. In fact, Doug used his musical talents to write the original fight song for the university and Gay had made the flag that would lead the team out.

She certainly made a big difference in the lives of many people, including the children that she and Doug cared for as Foster Parents for over 20 years. They opened their hearts and their homes to many children in need, several of which still stay in contact with the family today and have offered their gratitude for the love, the sense of security and the laughter that they were provided with under their care. But no child’s laughter was more dear to Gay than that of her four grandchildren. Although Gay wasn’t able to get around as much, she loved to see them play and dance and always gave plenty of hugs and kisses.

Gay suffered from rheumatoid and osteoarthritis her entire life. She never let the constant pain stop her from being there for her family and friends. She started suffering from dementia in 2010. Eventually, the arthritis was too much for her frail body and the dementia too severe that she was admitted to Shawnee Gardens Healthcare and Rehabilitation. Doug visited her every day until COVID restrictions prohibited him to enter the facility. Doug would later pass away from COVID in January 2021 with their son Randy passing away five days before Doug from COVID. By this time, Gay’s dementia was too severe for her to understand or remember what had happened.

Gay is survived by her daughter Kiz Olson (Jeffrey), son Benjamin Cowick (Krystal), four grandchildren and her sister, Barbara.

She is preceded in death by her husband John Douglas, her oldest son Randy Matthew, her parents Kate and Charles Richeson, as well as her brothers Ralph and Happy and her sister Donna.

Gay will always be remembered for her love of family, children and friends. No one was ever unwelcome in her presence and her kindness and acceptance of all people will be passed on for generations. Gay simply made the world a better place.

The family will be holding a viewing on Wednesday, October 20th at 9:30 a.m. with a service starting at 10:30 a.m. at Park Lawn Funeral Home, 8251 Hillcrest Rd., Kansas City, Missouri; burial will be held following the service at Memorial Park Cemetery in Kansas City, Missouri. Flowers are welcome and can be sent to the funeral home.

Service Information

The family will be holding a viewing on Wednesday, October 20th at 9:30 a.m. with a service starting at 10:30 a.m. at Park Lawn Funeral Home, 8251 Hillcrest Rd., Kansas City, Missouri; burial will be held following the service at Memorial Park Cemetery in Kansas City, Missouri. Flowers are welcome and can be sent to the funeral home.

Cowick, Gay Louise's Guestbook

So sorry for your loss. She sounds like an amazing lady that clearly went out of her way to impact and enrich the lives of everyone around her. My wife Marla and I will be praying for you and your family.

Roger Lewis

I was saddened to hear of your loss. I have many happy memories of time spent with Gay. I remember her telling me she thought of having a block party when I finally turned 30 the only thing was my birthday is in December. My heart goes out to you and your family.

Sharon Kenton

Sorry for your loss. I always enjoyed the trips I made with my grandma to see Aunt Gay and the time I got to spend with her. She was always welcome us into her house. I will alway cherish those memories.

Scotty Tilley

So sorry fir your loss. I can't fathom what you have been through this year. Hugs and prayers are coming your way. Judy

Judy Furey

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