Lorraine Brown, of Paw Paw
Aug. 1, 1926 — Feb. 1, 2016
Lorraine (Murphy) Brown of Paw Paw, beloved wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother, died peacefully in her home on February, 1 2016. She was 89. Her death follows that of her husband Melvin D. Brown, who passed away in June, 2015, and of her younger sister Doris (Murphy) Gebhard of Denver, Colorado.
Born Vivian Lorraine Murphy in Dowagiac on Aug. 1, 1926, to Dale and Kathryn (Christie) Murphy, Lorraine was a 1944 graduate of Dowagiac High School. She married Mel on Aug. 31, 1946, and they lived in East Lansing, Houghton, South Haven and Lawrence before moving to their dream home on Eagle Lake in Paw Paw Township in 1970. Lorraine loved gardening, growing roses, begonias, geraniums and other favorite varieties, as well as herbs
At an early age, she became a skilled seamstress and knitter, creating her own wardrobe in high school, and continuing throughout her life to enjoy making dresses, sweaters and items of home décor (as well as many doll clothes) for her relatives, friends and charity.
Lorraine was an active, curious and creative mother, instilling in her children an appreciation for music, literature and art. She was an enthusiastic volunteer in the Lawrence schools, working for many years as a Band Booster and a leader for both Brownies and Girl Scouts. Lorraine was a lifelong Episcopalian and a member of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, Paw Paw, for over 50 years, particularly enjoying her participation in the annual Christmas Cookie Walk.
In the 1960s and ‘70s, Lorraine worked part time in the offices of Lloyd Cook Auto Owners’ Insurance and Robert Lyons, DDS, and for 10 years, starting in 1979, she and Mel worked together managing the Lake Cora Hills golf club on Red Arrow Highway, Paw Paw. In retirement, Lorraine and Mel enjoyed their “snowbird” travels to the South, Southwest and California, making and visiting many friends, eventually settling into a winter home in Leesburg, Florida.
Lorraine is survived by her sister-in-law, Evalyn Fleet of Mancelona; her children Jere (Gail) Brown of Traverse City; Kathryn (Jim Hendon) Brown of Redlands, California.; and Robert (Lori) Brown of Paw Paw, as well as six grandchildren: John I. Marconi of Oakland, California.; Lauren (Ural) Yal of Yorba Linda, California.; Abigail (Daniel) Preston of Paw Paw; Philip Brown of Parker, Colorado.; Adam (Emily) Brown of Mattawan and Alexa Brown of Paw Paw. Lorraine was dearly loved by her five great-grandchildren Ella, Caden, Mete, Sienna and Clara, as well as her several nieces and nephews and, of course, her beloved feline companion, George.
Friends are invited to visit with the family on Monday, Feb. 8, from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Adams Funeral Home, 502 W. Michigan Ave, Paw Paw. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Tuesday, Feb. 9, at St. Mark’s Episcopal church, 412 Cedar St., Paw Paw. Burial will take place at 2:30 p.m. at Riverside Cemetery, Dowagiac, Michigan. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to St. Mark’s Episcopal Church or Eleanor’s Pantry, Paw Paw. Share a memory or sign the guestbook at:www.adamspawpaw.com