FLORA BROWN


Flora May Thorgaard Brown
Flora May Thorgaard Brown, aged 84, died quietly in her sleep October 1, 2012, after a decade of battling Alzheimer's Disease. Born May 8, 1928, in Seattle, Washington, the daughter of Paul Thorgaard and Ebba Peterson, Flora graduated from Roosevelt High School and attended the University of Washington and San Fernando Valley State College.
Flora's beautiful soprano voice earned her leading roles with the Seattle Summer Opera. She also sang with the Seattle Chorale, the Westchester (New York) Chorale, and was a lead soprano with the San Francisco Symphony Chorus. Flora was an excellent conversationalist, wonderful lifelong friend to many, devoted dog owner and cat lover, exceptional cook, loyal community and school volunteer, and loving mother and wife. In 1951, Flora wed the love of her life, Hilton Ultimus Brown III. They began their married life in University of Washington student housing while Hilton finished his engineering degree. Flora's knack for creating durable friendships and strong community ties was a bright counterpoint to Hilton's steady climb up the corporate ladder as a power engineer at Puget Power and Light and then at IBM.
In addition to rearing their three children and attending to the needs of a number of eccentric and lovable dogs and cats over the years, she also volunteered and served as a counselor at Planned Parenthood and in numerous other community service groups.
Flora is survived by her husband, Hilton U. Brown III; son, Hilton U. Brown IV of Mountain View, CA, daughters, Kristine Allegra Riley of Campbell, CA, Elisabeth Brown McMahon of Willits, CA; her five granddaughters; Emily McGill, Amara Riley, Morgan McMahon, Sarah McMahon, and Jessica McMahon, two great grandsons, Ryan McGill and Christopher McGill and a number of other relatives and close friends.

Published in San Francisco Chronicle on Oct. 21, 2012