1926 - 2021
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MARY ANNE WESSELS BROWN, 94, died on Sunday, Feb. 28, 2021. Born July 16, 1926, at home on the farm in Lake Township, Allen County, Ind., she was the daughter of Jane and Joe Wessels. She attended St. Patrick's Grade School and Arcola High School and was educated to be a teacher at University of St. Francis and Ball State University where she met Frank Brown. They raised six children in the house on Lima Road outside of Fort Wayne and belonged to St. Vincent Catholic Church for 53 years before moving to Texas. In March of 2004, they moved to Christus St. Joseph's Village in Coppell, Texas, where their daughter Paula Willett helped care for Mary Anne and Frank. Mary Anne loved teaching and while raising her family she was also a constant volunteer, using her talents as a Girl Scout Leader, a 4-H Leader, a member of the St. Vincent de Paul Society in St. Vincent's Parish and in the Fort Wayne District Council. She helped refugees from Cambodia and Vietnam when they came to Fort Wayne, teaching them English, helping them learn the culture, become citizens, and get their licenses. Along with her daughter Paula and her husband Gary Willett, she helped Paula's daughter, Heather Jane Link with the Home Schooling of four great-grandchildren in Coppell. She was always active in St. Vincent's Church, and at St. Joseph's Village, encouraging people by leading the daily Rosary, being a Homebound Extra-Ordinary Eucharistic Minister to Catholics in a nursing home and at home, being Sacristan, leading Divine Mercy Prayers, and fostering Parish Eucharistic Adoration. She enjoyed genealogy and growing plants. Mary Anne is survived by her children, Joseph (Phyllis) Brown of Muncie, Ind., Paula (Gary) Willett of Irving, Texas, Mary Margaret Brown (Norman Metzger) of Zionsville, Ind., Frank (Denise) Brown of Garland, Texas, and James (Barbara) Brown of Middletown, Ohio; daughter-in-law, Bev Eley of Decatur, Ind.; 16 grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Frank; son, William Brown; sisters, Adelaide Wessels and Betty Richardville (Bernie); and granddaughter, Angela Griffith. Mass of Christian Burial is 12:30 p.m. Saturday, March 20, 2021, at St. Vincent Catholic Church in Fort Wayne. Burial will be in the family plot at St. Patrick's Cemetery on Bass Road near Arcola, Ind. In lieu of flowers, the family prefers donations to be made to Saint Vincent de Paul Society in Mary Anne Brown's honor. Saint Vincent de Paul Society of Fort Wayne, 1502 East Wallen Road, Fort Wayne, IN 46825,

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Published in Fort Wayne Newspapers on Mar. 14, 2021.
Mass of Christian Burial
12:30 PM
St. Vincent Catholic Church
Memories & Condolences
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2 entries
March 29, 2021
Where to begin?
I have so many memories of Mary Anne I could probably write a book!
Several adjectives come to mind when I think of her: Faithful, Wise, Active.
Faithful because she took her faith very seriously. Even when things were going wrong like at church or wherever, she still remained very strong in her beliefs- this was her church, this was her home, this was her life.
She came across many times as just knowing what she knew was right. She gave good advise when asked for it, she expressed herself very well in speaking and writing, and even if one disagreed with her, one knew where she was coming from and respected her for it.
Mary Anne was very involved in many activities- be it the old Howard's Photo at Northcrest in Fort Wayne, 4-H, Saturday morning Rosary prayers in different friends' homes, St. Vincent de Paul Society, and many church ministries in Indiana and Texas. She was always reliable for whatever was needed in any event.
I really miss Mary Anne. May she Rest In Peace.
Jeanne Kachuk Hall
March 18, 2021
Offering our deepest condolences during this difficult time.
Donnelly's Colonial Funeral Home
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