Barbara Brine

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  • "BB was a humble, gracious, God loving saint on Earth. She..."
    - Charles Donovan, III
  • "I just heard of Barbara's passing and I am so sad. Barbara..."
    - Marlene Steiner
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    - Pam
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    - G Jenkins
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Obituary

Barbara Theresa Brine (Bebe) was born in Boston, Massachusetts on October 19, 1934, lived most of her adult life on Manhattan's Upper West Side, and died on August 22, 2014 in Centerville, Massachusetts. Bebe's impressive professional success as a real estate broker and manager of The Corcoran Group's bustling West Side Office augments her true legacy and impact: daily devotion and unswerving faith in God, steadfast loyalty to and love of friends and family and service to the most vulnerable among us, particularly babies, children and the homeless. A daily communicant, Bebe was an active member at her neighborhood Roman Catholic parish, the Church of the Blessed Sacrament.

One of three daughters and the third of Marianne and William Brine's seven children, Bebe graduated from The Convent of the Sacred Heart School in Noroton, Connecticut, Manhattanville College in Purchase, New York and Boston College where she earned a Master's degree in Social Work. Bebe worked with the underserved in Boston, assessing family environments and protecting babies and children at risk. She left social work as a profession when she moved to New York in 1973, yet remained an active volunteer all her life in both governance and volunteer roles with numerous organizations. Some of the organizations she supported: Birthright International, a crisis pregnancy service, Catholic Near East Welfare and Society of the Sacred Heart. Bebe saw people for their dignity, not their circumstance, and befriended several of the homeless individuals who lived in her neighborhood. She volunteered at Church of the Blessed Sacrament's soup kitchen and shelter for HIV positive homeless men for more than 20 years

When she moved to New York, Bebe worked with Betty Breed Real Estate before joining The Corcoran Group. There, she found her niche and an opportunity to leverage her natural business acumen, creative marketing ideas, and negotiating skills. Barbara Corcoran considers Bebe key to the early success of the company both for having singlehandedly opened and built the West Side office and for her ability to attract, hire, and retain talented staff despite the industry's high turnover rate. She introduced her sister, Mary Fahey, to the business; Bebe's training helped Mary become Corcoran's Broker of the Year in 1989.

Bebe is survived by her three living siblings and their spouses, Ann and Bill Brine of Hanover, New Hampshire, Christina and Jack Largay of Centerville, Massachusetts, Karen and Peter Brine of Hanover, New Hampshire, her cousins, 15 of her 16 nieces and nephews, and her many godchildren She was predeceased by her two younger brothers, Christopher and Benedict, by her nephew, Keith Largay, and by her older sister, Mary.

With her innate ability to radiate peace and calm amidst strife, Bebe brought a special comfort to young children, and her memory will live forever in their hearts. Donations can be made in her memory to Catholic Near East Welfare 1011 First Ave. New York, NY 10022 or Society of the Sacred Heart 4120 Forest Park Ave. St. Louis, MO 63108.
Published on NYTimes.com from Sept. 12 to Sept. 13, 2014
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