ELLSWORTH - Ernest Jackson Dowling IV, 49, went to be with his Lord, surrounded by family at his home in Ellsworth, Maine on August 21, 2019, after a long courageous battle with cancer. Ernest was born on September 19, 1969 in Lake Wales, Florida to Kathy and Ernest Jackson ‘Jack’ Dowling III.
Early in his life, Ernest was diagnosed with a chromosomal disorder which produced many challenges, both physical and cognitive, but all of which he overcame with his great love of life and people.
Throughout his life, Ernest was thoughtful and kind. His sense of humor and zest for life was endearing. Through the years, photos of Ernest’s friends and family were displayed on his walls. He loved amusement rides, parties, food, boating, and electronics. Ernest especially had an amazing love and memory for people. Never forgetting names and facts, people were important to Ernest, and his sweet spirit of acceptance was a gift. He will be dearly missed by everyone.
For his last 30 years, Ernest lived in the loving care of Downeast Horizons in Ellsworth, Maine after graduating from Bucksport High School in 1989. At his church, Crossroads Apostolic, in Hancock, Ernest faithfully attended Sunday services, Sunday School, and participated in church dramas and activities. Church family was important to Ernest, and through their love and encouragement throughout the years, he grew in his faith in Jesus.
Ernest was predeceased by his mother, Kathy L. Johnson. He is survived by his father Jack and stepmother Rebecca Dowling, his sister Christy and husband Gabe Baker and their children Madison and Grace, Ernest’s stepfather Alan and wife Jaye Johnson, Ernest’s brother Russell Johnson and his children Cadence and Finley, step-brother Jarrod Johnson and his children Adreena, Jason and Zackary, step-sister Amanda Hopkins and her children Abigale, Olivia and Isabelle. He is also survived by his step-grandmother Iris Dowling, Aunt Cleette and husband Kevin Swymer, Uncle Robert Dowling, Uncle John and wife Jill Dowling, Aunt Patty and husband Clyde Copeland, Uncle Buster and wife Joy Brackin, close family in Florida Sandy Donner, Nancy and husband Tim Hodges, Erin Peralta, Ashley Ludden, and many others.
Ernest’s family will forever be grateful for the loving care of Downeast Horizons, a non-profit agency assisting adults and children with developmental disabilities. Special thanks to Tony Zambrano, Jeff Jones, and longtime friend Alicia Holdsworth; direct caregivers, Chad and wife Amanda Davis, Sarah Cole, Heather Stevens, Terry Woodbury; housemates Michael and Cain, and many other DEH staff members and dear friends.
The family would also like to thank Northern Light Cancer Care, especially Dr. Lucas, and Beacon Hospice nurses, Emily and Ily, among others.
All are welcome to a Celebration of Life Service at Crossroads Apostolic Church, 27 Church Lane, Hancock Maine, on Saturday, August 31, 2019, Pastor Mike Cox officiating. Visitation 9:30-10am, Service 10am with a Reception immediately following at the church. Private committal with family at the Hillside Cemetery in Bucksport.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be given in memory of Ernest to Downeast Horizons, 77 Union St., Ellsworth, ME 04605. Funeral arrangements by Brookings Smith Funeral Home, Bangor. Condolences to the family may be expressed at BrookingsSmith.com.