Collin Bowen 

Graduation Year: 1988
Induction Year: 2012
Killed in action in Afghanistan
U.S. Army
Outstanding athlete
Courageous man.

Collin J. Bowen was a product of many years of positive experiences with Marion Community Schools and associated youth programs. Beginning with the Marion Police Athletic League at the tender age of 5, Collin got his start in baseball. He quickly moved up the ranks and added Urban League flag football where he played with lightning-fast Marion stand-out Lyndon Jones. Collin continued in his sporting career at Marion Youth Baseball, as an all-star second baseman for C&H Shoes and the Carpet Discount House. He was an outstanding infielder and lead-off hitter. His competitive spirit was well-known at Lincoln Field.
Collin continued his solid athletic career running cross country at Jones Middle School, with the guidance of Jerry Fox. He competed for years against his teammate — the more talented Damon Bickell — and in spite of never beating Damon one time, Collin's coach would later say that Collin ran his very last race as hard as he ran his very first race. He refused, even at that tender age, to accept defeat willingly.
Collin went on to Marion High School where his reputation for competitiveness and a fighting spirit preceded him. Under the steady hand of legendary tennis coach Bill Beekman, Collin and doubles partner Scott Ramey advanced to the state tennis championships. He repeated that incredible accomplishment in baseball under the tutelage of Mel Wysong, advancing to the state finals in baseball in 1988. Collin was the starting second baseman for the Marion Giants that year.
The seeds planted, watered, and nourished at Marion Community Schools went on to grow into an amazing and courageous man who was always proud of his upbringing in Marion. In fact, after Collin's untimely death in the mountains of Afghanistan as an American war hero, two of his most prized possessions were discovered among his belongings. The first: his Marion Giant state runner-up baseball ring was found in its original package in his jewelry box. The second: his 1988 Marion High School lettermen's jacket — complete with achievement medals hanging from the letters, and a ticket stub from a basketball game in the pocket — was found hanging proudly in his closet.

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