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Donald's Story

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Donald J. Brown, 99, of Glendale, Ariz., and formerly of Danville and Potomac, passed away on Sept. 25, 2016, at Providence Place at Glencroft Retirement Community. Don was born Feb. 18, 1917, in Danville, to Orville R. Brown and Beatrice James Brown of Danville. Don attended Danville High School and began working as a printer for Commercial-News in Danville in 1934, where he became a member of the International Typographical Union. He then worked at the Recording & Statistical Corporation in Danville from approximately 1945 to 1964. In 1941, Don married Ruth Olivia Hedgpeth and together they raised two children, Janice, born in 1942, and Wayne, born in 1945. The family lived in Danville until 1953, when they first moved to a farm near Henning. They then moved to their family farm near Potomac in 1955, where they farmed until 1964. Don and Ruth, along with their children, were members of Potomac Church of Christ and their children attended and graduated from Potomac Schools. In 1964, Don and Ruth moved to Phoenix, Ariz., where he was employed as a printer by Arizona Republic until he retired in 1980. Following Ruth's death in 2002 Don moved to Glencroft Retirement Community in Glendale, Ariz.
Don loved dogs and was an avid outdoorsman all of his life, hunting and fishing whenever he could. He and Ruth spent their summers camping in various cooler climates from 1980 until 2002, and with their camper toured throughout the western states, and even up to Alaska. After losing Ruth in 2002, Don explored his family roots in Ireland with daughter, Janice, and roamed the wilds of Alaska with son, Wayne. Don always enjoyed travel and exploring new places.
In addition to his parents, Don was preceded in death by his wife, Ruth Olivia Hedgpeth Brown and his sister, Ruth Brown Kennedy, of Champaign. He is survived by two children, Janice Olivia (Keith) Roudebush, of San Diego, Calif., and Wayne (Anne Taylor) Brown, of Carmel, Ind.; three grandchildren, Jeffrey Scott Bennett, of Denver, Colo., Lori N. Roudebush, of Sausalito, Calif., and Sarah Lynne (Doug) Brockett, of Breckenridge, Colo.; and two great-grandchildren, Nathaniel Bender and Matthew Bender, of Sausalito, Calif.. Don lived an active, independent life for 97 years, succumbing to Alzheimer's in his final months.
A private memorial service will be held celebrating the lives of both Don and Ruth by the immediate family in the near future.
Published on October 5, 2016
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