George Brandon Ellis, Jack of All Trades

World War II Air Force bomber. Realtor. Dry cleaner. Publisher. Clown, musician, stand-up comedian. Cessna pilot, fisherman, Master Mason – there wasn’t much George Brandon Ellis didn’t do in his life.

Here at Legacy, we read a lot of obituaries, and when we come across a well-written one about an intriguing character like retired Major George Brandon Ellis, we like to share. reports:

George Brandon Ellis

He played harmonica, ukulele, banjo, upright bass, bass guitar, piano, drums, trumpet and spoons. He played the guitar in a country band, trumpet in the Alzafar Drum & Bugle Corps and drums in a jazz combo.

He was a member of the Shriner Gun & Rod Club and its Royal Order of Jesters, a philanthropic group of businessmen.

As a Shriner clown, he donned a red nose and Willie Nelson braids. It led to stand-up.

“He told the corniest jokes you can imagine,” daughter Cheryl Troup said. He once convinced a flight attendant to let him do a routine on board. “My mom was trying to crawl under the seat.”


Ellis died earlier this week in San Antonio, Texas at the age of 84. He is survived by three daughters, 11 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

You can sign his Guest Book here.