VANCOUVER — Jeannine Frances Brown passed away peacefully and surrounded by loving care after an illness, on April 11, 2017 in Vancouver, Wash. She was born in Seattle on January 10, 1945. She grew into a smart and charming child there, then in Kansas and Alaska. She returned to her hometown and graduated high school in West Seattle. Jean enlisted in the Women’s Army Corps in 1960, and while stationed in Alabama risked her life supporting the civil rights movement. She made lifelong friends in the service and was honorably discharged in 1966.
Her happiest days were spent with her grandparents, where Grandpa taught her to garden as a toddler. Her love of nature and gardening was lifelong, and her flowers were a glory. She loved to laugh more than anything, and was a steadfast friend. Her word was impeccable, she would do as she said and never stop before it was done. She loved music, art, hiking and a good boxing match — Buffy St Marie, Janis Joplin, Muhammad Ali and Elvis were a few of her favorites.
After she was honorably discharged from the service she volunteered for over 20 years as a caregiver of elderly women in Pacific County, where she moved in 1985. Jean was courageous in the face of challenges and always did her best to help people in need. She’d stand up for herself and others, and was unfailingly generous. She encouraged many, and had deep compassion.
She read widely in philosophy and culture, and was brilliant, and blessed with common sense. Jean lived in the Ocean Park area for 32 years, and in that time was a good neighbor to many. She is remembered for the way she kept a genuine sweetness and wonder about life. She is remembered for her laughter and her kindness. She left behind an incredible music archive, which she donated to World Dance Party in Seattle. Jean was proud to be of Northwest Native American descent, and proud to be a veteran.
She is dearly loved by family and friends, and will be remembered always.
She is survived by her cat MyMy, who now lives with her cousin, Molly; her cousin Shari, her friend Kitt, many loving friends and her spouse, Storme.
Childhood reminiscence by Jean Brown: “By the time I was born Grandpa had retired. He spent all his time in the yard. Grandma loved flowers and he surrounded her with them. Lilacs the length of the East side, roses, and on the West side, climbing roses. On the North East, a rose garden with a rockery around it. In the rockery were pinks (small but tall carnations). A rockery flower garden on the East side. In the center of the east side were fruit trees. Cherries and pears, an apple tree in the backyard. During the winter he worked at his shop in the basement and made toys and other things. I got to help in the shop. But just errands and other misc., never allowed to use a shop tool. He was a sweetheart. He set up a buzzer, which Grandma could ring when she needed or wanted him to come up stairs. Using the stairs was difficult with her bad hip. When I started kindergarten, Grandpa walked me to school and walked me home. When he died I attended his funeral. He was in a casket and I could not see his legs. I wondered why he didn’t have legs? And why he was sleeping in heaven? Also Grandma always had me say prayers at night. Our Father which is in heaven. I thought it was odd I had to say that instead of our Grandfather which is in heaven.”
A memorial will be held in Ocean Park at a later date.