December 21, 1948 ~ July 18, 2007
Deborah Diann Brown
December 21, 1948 - July 18, 2007
Born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, Deborah Brown confirmed the univeral truth that Southern women are just out-and out-different than everybody else. John Brown knew that about Deborah and, to his delight, they were married on July 3, 1971.
Shortly thereafter, John would return to active duty in the US Marine Corps and the family would relocate from Tennessee to California. It would be here that John and Deborah would raise their five children and Deborah would begin a career as a volunteer for the American Red Cross that would span more than three decades.
When Deborah was telephoned in the middle of the night to assist with a local disaster, she would call her friend and fellow Red Cross volunteer Carol McKinney and tell her, "It's horse and buggy time." There in the wee hours, the two women would load up and head out.
Deborah managed Red Cross shelters and the caring of evacuees. If victims could not make their way to a shelter, Deborah drove the food and supplies to them. And when the worst had passed, Deborah would work with family services to help victims secure the resources they needed so they could return to their lives.
Deborah not only responded to local disasters, she responded to wildland fires and floods throughout California and Arizona. Deborah responded to tornados in Missouri, hurricanes in Florida, Virginia, and Louisiana, and she was there after 9/11.
When asked about her long career as a volunteer for the Red Cross, Deborah would recount that she had been called out for just about every type of disaster except ice. "The cold just makes my bones ache," she'd say.
For Deborah, it was all about the people she served, and she instilled this value as a Red Cross instructor for First Aid/CPR and Disaster Services training for newcomers. Deborah's last series of classes provided the opportunity for Red Cross to introduce Shelter Operations to over 100 community volunteers.
Deborah had an innate sense of preserving human dignity in the worst of situations. She admonished her students to "put yourself in the victim's place, for now this shelter is their home." Deborah knew how simple thoughtful actions by volunteers really let victims of disaster know that they count. Remember this, and you remember Deborah.
The Brown family invites you to remember and celebrate the life of Deborah Brown.
Deborah is survived by her husband John Brown; daughters Janet, Tabitha, and Christina; son John; and grandchilcren, Angela, Brooke, Mark, Chandler, Cameron and Mitchell.
Deborah loved living in El Segundo near the ocean so this is where the family will gather to remember her. The Memorial Service will be held at Library Park, 101 West Mariposa Avenue, El Segundo on Saturday August 18, 2007 at 2pm. The Memorial Service will be followed by a good old-fashoined potluck get-together to celebrate Deborah's life. This will take place less than two blocks away at the South Bay Lodge, located at 520 Main Street in El Segundo. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: NPDPSC, IN MEMORY OF DEBORAH DIANN BROWN, National Prion Disease Pathology Surveillance Center (NPSPSC), ATTN: Kay Edmonds, 2085 Adelbert Rd., Department of Pathology, Room 418, Cleveland, Ohio 44106.
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