April 16, 1929 - February 7, 2020
William R. (Bill) Brown died February 7, 2020 in Traverse City, Michigan. Bill was born April 16, 1929, and raised in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. He proudly claimed his greatest high school accomplishment was persuading his girlfriend, Beatrice Chadwick, to marry him. In 1951 Bill and Bea were married. They had four children, Jill (Fred) Trull, Michael (Mary) Brown, Beth (Robert) Woods and Robert (Dawn) Brown. In addition they were American parents of their Vietnamese son, Nicholas Brown, and foster parents of several children. Grandchildren and great grandchildren were their pride and joy: Jessica (Bryan) Halker, Samuel Halker, Megan (Pete) Benbow, Ryan Brown, Shawn Brown (Jason Bott), Riley Bott, Evie Bott, Gannon Bott, Christopher (Erica) Woods, Hunter Woods, Kelli (Jay) Weber, Grace Weber, Charlotte Weber, Ella Weber, Dillon Brown, and Alexa Brown. Bill was close to his many nieces and nephews and had a special relationship with his nephew Andrew (Erica) Chadwick and children, as well as niece Holly (Mohammed “Haloup” Mashaleh) Chadwick, and sister-in-law Helen Marie Chadwick. Bill is survived by his sister Helen Brown (Carl) Luepnitz . Bill was preceded in death by his parents Charles O. Brown and Elizabeth Gordon Brown, brothers Walter and Robert Brown, and his son, Michael Brown. Bill received a Juris Doctor degree from University of Michigan and served two years in the U.S. Air Force as lieutenant before moving to Traverse City, in 1955. He practiced law for eighteen years before he was elected Circuit Court Judge. He served Grand Traverse, Leelanau and Antrim Counties for eighteen years as Circuit Court Judge. Upon retirement, Bill and Bea continued to enjoy the love and fellowship of family and friends in their home on Mickey Lake and at their cabin on Whitefish Bay in the Upper Peninsula. They enjoyed travel and volunteer projects, in particular annual work missions with a volunteer group known as the Twenty Niners. Bill and Bea were active in Habitat for Humanity and Meals on Wheels for many years and Bill was also a member of the Lions Club. Since 1956 Bill and Bea have been active members of Asbury Methodist Church, now known as Traverse Bay United Methodist Church. Bill was an exemplary husband, father, grandfather and friend. He was modest in nature, kind beyond measure, and generous in spirit. He was a man of few words and profound wisdom. The world was a better place with Bill Brown’s presence, and he will be sorely missed. Arrangements have been made for a private burial, and a memorial service to be held at Traverse Bay United Methodist Church on Thursday, February 13 at 11 a.m. Memorial contributions, in lieu of flowers, may be made to Traverse Bay United Methodist Church. The family is being cared for by the Reynolds Jonkhoff Funeral Home.
William R. (Bill) Brown died February 7, 2020 in Traverse City, Michigan. Bill was born April 16, 1929, and raised in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. He proudly claimed his greatest high school accomplishment was persuading his girlfriend, Beatrice... View Obituary & Service Information
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