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George Olney Van Brott


1930 - 2015
George Olney Van Brott Obituary
George Brott departed on his final voyage peacefully at his home in Santa Rosa on July 31, surrounded by his loving family, following a brief illness. He was 85 years old.
Born in 1930 in Hartford, CT to Jeremiah Olney Brott and Julia Parke Brott, George was raised outside of Washington DC. Growing up during the Depression, he developed a sense of frugality he carried with him throughout his life. He obtained Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Yale University. In 1954, he and his new spouse Ann moved to Southern California where he took a job with Travelers Insurance to pay the bills while he obtained his teaching credential. He retired from Travelers 35 years later. During that time he and Ann proudly raised three children in Claremont and spent time every summer exploring a portion of the Pacific Coast between Rosarito Beach, Baja California and Astoria, Oregon.
After retirement George and Ann moved to Willits, took numerous cruises and played competitive bridge. George was active with Friends of the Willits Library and the Lion's Club. They traveled and participated in many bridge tournaments throughout the western US. Several years after Ann's passing, after 51 years of blessed marriage, George moved to Sonoma County to be closer to his children and the second love of his life, Phylis Ballingall, an old high school classmate. George and Phylis shared many adventures, travel and theater prior to her passing.
George is predeceased by his beloved wife, Ann Brott and dear companion Phylis Ballingall. He is survived by his children, Jeremy (Shelley) of Santa Rosa, Anila Roberts (Hugh Williams) of Cotati and Jeff (Liane) of San Bernardino; his grandchildren Alex, Tessa, Deseree, and Kyle; sisters Julie Harris of Portland, Oregon and Anne Hare of Greenfield, Massachusetts; brother Bob Van Brott of Del Ray Beach, Florida; and a verdant garden plot at the Oakmont community garden.
George was a devoted dad and grandfather who will be remembered for the many family camping trips throughout California and to many western National Parks, his love and skill at bridge and gardening, and his quiet sense of humor.
A celebration of George's life will be scheduled in the near future. He was concerned about the environment and the future for his grandchildren and requested donations be made to the Environmental Defense Fund, Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, 350.org, or the environmental organization of your choice.
Published in Willits News from Aug. 6 to Sept. 5, 2015
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