Garfield R. Brown, 96, of Eau Claire, went home with the Lord peacefully on Saturday, September 21 with family by his side during a reading of the Beatitudes, his favorite Bible verses.
He was born in Eau Claire, WI on July 9, 1917, the son of Victor and Hilda Brown (Hanson).
He was the husband of Rosemary and they celebrated fifty-nine beautiful years together until the Lord called her home in March of 2006. Together they owned and operated the GR Brown Company.
Garfield is survived by eight children; four daughters, Janet Reppert (Steven) of Broken Arrow, OK, Nancy Stene (Scott), Jacquelin Brown, and Kay Lentz (Al) of Eau Claire and four sons; David (Raquel), Robert (Bobbi), Terry (Hatha Lee) and Steven of Eau Claire. He is also survived by twenty-six grandchildren and many great and great-great-grandchildren, daughter-in-law, Shirley Brown; sisters-in-law, Irene Brown, Shirley Gardiner, Irene Dyer (Ed); brother-in law, John (June) Thompson and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by a son, Gary Brown; a daughter, Judith Buckwheat; two grandchildren, Steven Parks and Valerie Rose; his parents; brothers; David and Clifford; and a sister, Virginia Campbell.
Garfield served as a medic in the U.S. Navy and was a member of the Disabled American Veteran's organization.
Garfield was proud to say that he was a conservative Republican and that he was a jitterbug dance champion. He operated several beauty shops, owned the Tot and Teen Shop, the restaurant at the Eau Claire Bus Depot and the Brown Card Company where he made beautiful post cards, Christmas cards and calendars. He learned how to fly and purchased his own piper-cub airplane in order to take arial views of towns of which he made postcards for in the five state area. There was nothing quite like flying with him as he would open the side door of the plane and yell back at you to, "take the stick" while he took pictures through the open door. This was always followed by his asking if you were ready to do the "Loop-d-loop" and then landing on the airfield on his farm. Garfield purchased the farm so his children could "ride the range" and so he could provide them with land on which to build their own homes.
Garfield took Rosemary to Norway where they had a wonderful time meeting relatives and friends who have kept in touch with Garfield on Facebook.
Garfield measured his success by how well he could provide for his family and he worked long, hard hours but there was always time for whisker rubs, "gobbles," vacations at resorts, practical jokes, teaching you how to swim, to build an ice skating rink in the yard and to buy his children a pony. He found time to show you the new kitties in the barn, to make home made ice cream, to take you to Sunday School and cream puffs.
Garfield's health declined and he had time to reflect on how blessed he was in life these last few years. He said the smartest thing he ever did was to marry Rosemary and that he was rich because he had ten children. His prayer was that he would be forgiven for any sins so he could go to heaven and be with Jesus and Rosemary. He had a beautiful smile and as one of his granddaughters said, "Grandpa was the funniest most creative person I have ever known, the wheels were always turning in his head, I will miss." As will we all.
The family wishes to thank Dove Health Care and the Wisconsin Veteran's Home for their care. Special thanks to Laura, Anna, and Karl at Dove Health Care and Katie and all the special nurses at the Wisconsin Veteran's Home who made Garfield's last days comfortable and peaceful.
Dad, Grandpa, we will miss your smile, your "ya hoos," rides on the hay wagon, and your wisdom and strength. You were a kind and forgiving man and you will long be remembered by those that love you. We will see you again in the blink of an eye and are comforted knowing you are with Jesus, Mom and those you dearly loved who were called home before you.
Funeral Services will be held on 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, September 26, 2013, at with Pastor Russell Kampfer officiating at Our Redeemer - Epiphany Lutheran Church, 601 Fall St. in Eau Claire. Burial will be in Lakeview Cemetery with full military honors by American Legion Post 53. Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, September 25, 2013, at Lenmark Gomsrud Linn Funeral Home, 814 First Ave. in Eau Claire and again one hour prior to the service on Thursday at the church.
Family requests memorials be directed to the Wisconsin Veteran's Home, 2175 E Park Avenue, Chippewa Falls, WI 54729.
For online condolences please visit obituaries at, www.lenmarkfh.com.