Sunday school class surprises couple for anniversary

Staff Writer
Brownwood Bulletin
Virgil and Shirley Cowin are pictured outside thier home with their daughter, Becky Clark, and grandson, Brandon Clark, as members of the Cowins' Sunday school class surprise the couple to celebrate their 63rd anniversary.

“A total, total surprise from our Sunday school class.”

That’s how Shirley Cowin described the surprise celebration the Coggin Avenue Baptist Church Sunday school class threw for Shirley Cowin and her husband, former Brownwood Police Chief Virgin Cowin, in honor of the couple’s 62nd anniversary.

On May 28, 30 participants in about 20 vehicles drove by the Cowins’ home in south Brownwood.

Drivers blew the horns of the vehicles, which had been decorated with balloons and handmade signs bearing messages to the surprised Cowins.

The couple’s daughter, Becky Clark, had been tasked with getting her parents outside to see the spectacle— without them knowing why.

“We really need to go outside and sit for a little while,” Clark told her parents.

“Why?” Virgil Cowin asked. “Why the front?”

“Let’s just go do it,” Clark insisted.

Clark got her unsuspecting parents to agree to go outside, and the caravan of vehicles began driving by.

“I thought it was pretty neat,” Virgil Cowin said.

“We enjoyed it,” Shirley Cowin added.

“It was wonderful,” Clark said.

It’s been 10 years since Virgil Cowin, now 83, retired as the Brownwood police chief. Cowin said he misses his old job, but he likes what he sees in current Chief Ed Kading.

“He’d go back tomorrow if he could,” Shirley Cowin said.

Two of the vehicles that drove by the Cowins' south Brownwood home are pictured.