DAVID THOMAS GEORGE "DIGGER" BROWN David Thomas George"Digger" Brown (most recently of Fanny Bay BC) passed away in his son's home on Monday, June 24, 2013. David was predeceased by his father, Herbert Walter Brown (of MCDougall and Brown Funeral Home - Toronto), his mother Alma Isobelle (Skippon) Brown, his brothers Michael Brown, John Brown, sister Virginia (Peach) Robertson, sister Norma Scarborough, sister Patricia Skippon, brother Charles Brown, and his sister Dianne Cavanagh. Digger leaves behind his best friend and ex-wife Doreen Koebel Brown (Courtenay), daughters Karen Brown (Victoria), son Jim Brown (Courtenay), and daughter Kelly Brown (Toronto) as well as grandson John-Michael Brown (Courtenay) and granddaughter Jenna Brown (Victoria), the "Victoria Clan" (Colin Wilson, Roberta Mason and Nick and Joe Mason-Wilson). Digger leaves behind sisters Gloria Baldwin (Scarborough) and Marigold "Mal" Wilson (Toronto) as well as numerous nieces and nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews around the world, all of whom played a huge roll in his life. Digger also leaves behind dear friends Glenn and Judy Plewis (Fanny Bay) and Bev Sparks (Comox). Digger started his career in the Navy being originally stationed in Churchill MB and then on to Moncton NB where he met and married his lifelong best friend Doreen Koebel. In 1956 he left the Navy to become an Ontario Provincial Police officer in Perth ON. David and family were stationed in many municipalities in Northwest ON including Kenora, Ignace, Thunder Bay and Marathon. He enjoyed an illustrious and respected career in the OPP and eventually served on the Board of Directors for the Ontario Provincial Police Association for many years until his retirement in 1985. Over the years Digger worked constantly to give back to the community: Lions Club, Palliative Care Volunteer, Canadian Red Cross donor, multiple suicide prevention hotlines, the Campbell River Soup Kitchen, Senior Peer Counseling in the Comox Valley and avidly served in the Anglican Church of choice in whichever community he was in. Digger had a great sense of humour, a huge love of his family and church and spent many many hours academically challenging himself. He loved boating on Lake Superior, he loved fishing with friends. He loved "retirement" and most recently since his move to Fanny Bay, became involved in his lifelong dream of woodcarving with the Royston Woodcarvers. Digger had the ability to attract lost souls and as such represented a father figure for many of the people he met. He was gregarious, a great public speaker and loved a "little wine for thy stomach's sake". Digger was diagnosed with lung cancer a year and a half ago and with the help of his well respected doctor, Marcus Langhans, was able to manage his life right to his last breath. His family would like to sincerely thank all of the community of the Comox Valley nurses and caregivers (VIHA and St. Joseph's General Hospital and the Canadian Red Cross) as well as Veteran's Affairs for making his life and those of his foremost caregivers as comfortable and pleasant as humanly possible to the very end. The family will hold a celebration of Digger's life at the Comox Branch of the Royal Canadian Legion (upstairs) from 1-4 p.m. on Saturday, June 29th. In lieu of flowers, Digger's family would like to request that people remember him with happiness and write a letter to your own respective Members of Parliament to outline the true need for a real palliative care/hospice facility in the Comox Valley as he believed avidly that death as life should be about choices. Arrangements entrusted to Comox Valley Funeral Home, Cremation and Reception Centre, Courtenay, BC, 250-334-0707.
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Published in the Toronto Star on June 27, 2013