Richard Gilson Brown (1936 - 2017)

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The peripatetic Richard Gilson Brown has completed his final journey, in so far as we can know. He left us behind Friday, Dec. 1, 2017, close to the stroke of midnight. We are bereft, but relieved that he is no longer in pain, which he suffered with his characteristic stoicism. We who knew and loved him remember his gentleness, his generosity and his good humor.
Born Oct. 6, 1936, in Albuquerque, N.M., Richard moved around with his family - parents, Lorin and Frances and sisters, Anna and Frances - to Santa Fe, N.M.; Nogales, Ariz.; Los Angeles, Calif.; Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico; eventually settling in Arco, Idaho, until he enlisted in the Army in 1954.
His further journeys took him to Europe and Asia, and numerous places throughout the Americas. His visit to Cuba in 2002 with his niece, Andrea, and nephew, Andrew, was a highlight of his wanderings, causing him to remark, "I feel as though I've been asleep all my life!" reacting to the profound intensity of the people he met there.
A grander highlight was to come in 2015, when he learned that he had a daughter of whom he had not known. Through DNA testing, Sherry Burns found her long-lost father, delighting him in what would be the final two years of his life.
In addition to Sherry, her husband, Tom and their son, Mason, Richard is survived by a son, Gregory Brown; an adopted daughter, Terry Brown; sisters, Anna Dauber and Frances Lench; and brothers-in-law, Arthur and Andy. He enjoyed immensely his nieces and nephews and their families, as they adored and admired him, affectionately referring to him as Tio, or Uncle Tio: Christopher Aguirre, Holly and Sabine; Andrea Simental, Xavier, Phorest and Tomas (who initiated "Family Night" dinners to be sure we would get to see him at least once a week); Andrew Lench, Aylie, Maisie and Morris; Richard Dauber, Charlotte, Alan and Ivy; Margaret Lane and children Jeremy, Rachel, Amanda, Derrick and Laurel; and Arthur Lee Dauber.
In 1998, he earned his Associates Degree in Information Technology and worked full time in that field until two months before his death. He declared the time he spent working at the Gates Foundation to be "... the crowning jewel of my resume."
Richard was a champion chess player and also loved playing Scrabble, Canasta and most card games - and if there was money on it, even more so. He was a sharp pool player. He loved spicy food, especially the traditional torta de huevo of Northern New Mexico. He was a big tipper. He loved yard sales and found many overlooked items of value, which he shared with his loved ones or turned to a profit. And he always, always carried a book to read in spare moments.
Thus, in lieu of flowers, we suggest that donations be made to the Literacy Volunteers of Santa Fe in Richard's name. His ashes will be strewn in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains near Cordova, N.M.
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Published in Anchorage Daily News on Dec. 17, 2017
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