Photo here is of Bob with his Mom at Christmas "Not one more after today. No baby, man, woman, or child. There are lives being lost here, All along the way. And we say - Not one more after today." -Chorus of a song "The Advocates Song"
Pass this onto someone you love, make them promise to schedule a Colonoscopy within 20 days. Age of 55 is too young to die, Bob lived a good happy life, but shorten by cancer. Colon cancer can be stopped 90% of the time, in it's tracks if found when polyps. Colorectal cancer (which includes cancer of the colon, rectum, anus, and appendix) is the second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. Only lung cancer claims more lives. This year nearly 131, 000 Americans will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer & 56,000 will die. Don't put off an appointment that saves your life. Heaven can wait a bit.
Robert ( Bob) Lewis Brown, born in Painesville Ohio on 10/22/47 died 5/20/03
married to Betty (Betsy)since Feb 19th, 1966. He was a loving father to two
sons, Robert (Rob) Jr. Of Ashtabula, and Randy of Painesville, Oh. His
Daughter-in- Laws, Robin and Tammy & seven grandkids, Felicia, Joshua,
Anthony, Timothy, Andrew , Angelina and Eric Brown. His family includes Mom (May
Brown) brothers; Mike and Dennis Brown, sisters Marylou Boyd and Diane Batich,
nephews, cousins, aunts, uncles, brother-in-laws and sister-in-laws. Bob has
many friends and loved ones who will miss him dearly.
Bob worked at Bob's A-Team Assoc. Being self employed for over 20 years as a heavy equipment operator. Bob was a hard worker, took pride in building a home for this family among other accomplishments. Nine years ago the Browns purchased 32 acre in Painesville Twp. For their excavation construction co. 2 years ago an idea was put in place to turn part of 8 acres into a family nature cemetery. All zoning was checked, Ohio revised code, etc. Bob had even designed an above ground plan detailing a mausoleum. The Browns knew from being in the retail funeral industry (division started over 6 years ago), what choices one had. They had planned many of the arrangements of a funeral down to the casket and where , just not when. The family wishes to grant Bob his wishes of choice of casket (stainless steel like his Dad was buried in) and where the burial, at the New Brown family nature Cemetery. Bob swore no funeral director was going to embalm him, nor touch his body. His family would make final arrangements, which was done, as Ohio permits this, as well as 43 other states. Families did this 100% of the time 50-80 yrs ago, it is more meaningful as well.
Bob was a fun loving man, loving the thrill of being behind the wheels of his stock car. He raced in different area speedways, over a span of more than 25 years, winning many trophies , friends and fans along the way. His sport involved the whole family and many hours of valuable family time. His sons also were able to race against him, winning some of those trophies, seeing as Bob had taught them all he knew in how to win. He caught this “bug“ from his Dad, who also enjoyed the sport. Along with the sons, there were brother-in-laws, nephews, cousins and best friends out on the track, competing with him, giving hours of pleasure in getting to that checkered flag first. Bob was also a religious man, knowing by faith, he was in God's hands, and a member of Lakeside Baptist church. He is home with God in heaven today.
The family and friends of Bob Brown, Thank you for sharing this funeral with them today. Thanking also Pastor Spargur and Lakeside Baptist, 306 Fairport Nursery Road, Painesville Township, Oh. members and friends for the assistance in holding this ceremony today, Fri. 5/23/03 to note the passing and love of all for Bob. He will be greatly missed here on Earth. Food after our service. (End memorial)
(Pastor, read at Fri. Funeral service, for wife Betty) May 23rd,2003
I knew Bob Brown well - as his wife of 37 years. The very best parts of his nature and being were his show of love and concern for his family and friends. He made sure to do his best to let you know you could count on him, and then he came through.
When we married young (at 17 and 18) many thought perhaps, due to the young age, this marriage would not work. Yet, it did, weathering a few storms along the way, we produced two sons who I know he couldn't have been more proud of, Bobby and Randy. During our early years in marriage we were invited to church by Becky Broda, his cousin. We added God to our daily life and raised our family in a Christian home. Now we can say, our sons too have a faith based life.
Bob was a man that had a favorite saying, “You have to know your limitations” and he did. Problem was, he did not have many. He built his family a super nice house, all in a year. He also could paint a car, tare apart and put together again a car or motor, or other motor vehicles. Bob made things out of his hard work, that others would not even attempt. He shared his knowledge with his sons, being the very best loving father any boy would ever want. He wasn't afraid of hard work, and his efforts show at the construction property he owned. Not one to believe things come to others on a silver platter, Bob worked hard to get what he wanted. He also played hard with stock cars and custom made vehicles for car shows. As his wife of 37 years, I really stood in awe of how much he could do, how much he helped others when needed, how much he was the very best husband a girl could ever want. He had a lot of friends who thought very dearly of him. His family of sisters, brothers and Mother were very loving and part of the reason Bob was such a good person.
I think he got a raw deal in getting cancer, and I know he fought hard to overcome the illness. Like in all things though, he knew his limitations. He said on the eve of his dying, “ I am ready for this to end, it isn't getting any better, only much worse. He wanted it to be over. I promised him he wouldn't be in pain and no heroic efforts AS he had already done ( page 2) them all. He said: ”Don't be Sad, don't go home and cry all night. We have had a good life. “
I know this earth is a far better place because of one Bob Brown, I sure just wish he was not robbed of more time with us here on Earth. He had cancer dx for 6 months, and during that time he was able to let his family and friends know he was looking out for them. He was my hero, will always be my hero. His age of 55 is way too young to die - yet he did accomplish a lot that he was proud of, and will forever be remembered as one who cared. If you were a friend of Bob you were lucky. If you were a family member, you were blest. If you are here today, I know it too is with a heavy heart. Know that, he was ready. He knew God was calling him home and he could do no more to stop the illness that took his life. He hated leaving us all, he really wanted to be here for his youngest grandchild, Angelina's wedding he said. Up until the eve of his death, we thought he might still have that chance. We didn't get the miracle we asked for of good health. But we did get a miracle. He died within 20-30 minutes, he was not going to linger in pain. He had his loved ones around him at the end of his life. We all know he is up there in heaven with the rest of his family and friends that have gone on before him, looking down on us. Still caring, still knowing that we love him.
------Doing the funeral ourselves, (This was not read at funeral) how we went about it.
People have no idea what to ask of a family member at this time. Within hour of the death, we got a phone call to the hospital room, and when I answered it, this friend had said he heard, then, "How are you?" "I am a widow" was my answer, as I am crying it out was not going to help, but letting him know, please. Since then, after many more ask that same “how are you doing?” my new answer is; "Ask me again in 25 years as right now I am dying of a broken heart." I know they mean well, and I have probably even done this to others in the past myself. People perhaps don't have a wide range of ways to express a simple I care, other than that. "I've been better" is also an answer, but, well, this is going to take some time. With Faith, the family close and all the friends he had, and our church support, I know God is going to take care of our 2 sons and their families, and myself.
DETAILS on the funeral and how we did this. ( email sent to friend shortly after she asked)
> I too have a wish to not be embalmed. tell me how you went about having the funeral at home and all that not having an undertaker involves? But, I won't bother you now with such things.
---- I was going to detail things anyway, and figured some others might wish to know how to go about this. Now is a good time (I feel release and know Bob can create information / ways to have others do this more meaningful service, it is fine to speak of now.) Thanks for being open to ask how. The fact he died in a hospital made things a little easier I think. If no doctor had seen him prior or he had not been under a doctors care, or died at home, it would be more difficult a bit, but still possible. He had colon cancer diagnosed in Nov. and was treated for 6 months, yet cancer claimed his life.
Bob had swore long ago, he didn't want strangers, any morticians to be the ones handling his body, and doing that embalming (which serves no purpose other than to dress up face for sleeping picture / viewing for open casket for 2-3 days. If a body is going to be transported across state line by air, boat, etc. it is done in a sealed casket, and sometimes embalming is required, but the Jewish exclude it and people can get excluded as well.) THERE IS NO STATE LAW THAT REQUIRES it, some funeral directors wrongly try to say it is (given that the body can be held in a cooling unit or burial is in X number of days). Honestly though, if I were not in this field, and did not have the background to know what a person's choices are , the ones in the high places had no idea a family could do this, and tried to stonewall me some. So I know if a person did not have the knowledge prior to making these arrangements - after a death it would be so much more difficult. That he wanted a service made up of his family and friends. He had spoke of a home setting, but the weather would have been too cold here yet now - we had it all at our church. I just wasn't going to involve a funeral home for anything. We didn't do it this way to bypass that $3,000.00 plus figure that they charge, (well maybe part of it was as no way is a large funeral bill, as sometimes they can be in excess of $6,000.00 to $10,000.00 going to be paid to strangers/ someone who was just going to do some of the same things this family could do).
I was lucky that we had 2 sons who knew what their Dad wanted, and were willing to take part. If they hadn't, I would have hired a trade employee to do this, but this is what was required to carry this out. Not knowing for sure, how hard this was going to be on our 2 sons to do, the really only things that made it possible for us to do this was: Years ago, people had no choice, and this is how it was done ALL THE TIME (and still is in many countries) - family taking charge of the body and arrangements. AND to know, this was a body, not where Bob was, but a shell we could deal with, being respectful yes, but aware that he is not this cadaver, not present here now. This body was precious and needed to be carried to a final resting place, which we wanted to do as per his wishes. Plus though, it was so much more meaningful for us to be able to do this for his remains.
1)Getting a copy of the death certificate (that the hospital provided me the day of his death, and I filled out part of ) which the doctor had filled the rest out, then left it at the hospital's same nursing station where Bob had been, for me to pick up from there. Then taking that down to the health dept. to get a "burial transportation permit" ($3.00) and we would be taking that permit to the coroners mortuary on the day of funeral service, so they can release the body to us was the first step. The hospital would hold the body until the funeral Friday - in their downstairs cooling facility. (Only legal requirement for us to handle the remains is the burial transportation permit.) The information that is required on the permit, is to cross off (what a good feeling) where it said funeral director, and circle where it says other. Fill in the information as to where the final destination (or cremation) and burial place will be, and when.
(I guess I am always aware of people's time, and know they have the choice to delete and not read further if this is no interest, or too long. Hearing while we were doing this, of another family from Tenn. who had gotten this permit from a funeral director in that state, so they themselves rented a tow u-haul trailer and moved their deceased loved one up to OH for family crypt burial here. ( Stationwagon or van would have held casket too though.)
I have to say how callous some people can be, how they think they are just being professional, yet man, how can they do that job and think they are helpful? Bob died at 1:45 pm, with his Mom, sister, brother, and myself around him. Hospital will always offer the room as long as you need it. They will make body presentable (if any tubes, remove, etc), bed straighten,etc. But they didn't have to do much to Bob, after his death, I got two nickels and placed them over his eyes, making them closed, and took a towel - rolled it up and placed it under his chin. I knew grand kids were coming, and we could make it look as if he were sleeping, not something they would be afraid of, with eyes and mouth open. (removed coins in ten minutes, fine - towel a bit later, before anyone else came he looked peaceful. ) Soon after, youngest son Randy and his family arrived. The hospital turned on the air conditioner, to keep the room really cool - and delivered cookies and coffee. Really nice thoughtful nurse / people, except one. Oldest son Rob and family got there from their city of over hour away at 4:30, and here comes this one, 5 min. later, the supervisor head nurse, and walks into the room, saying she needs to talk to Mrs. B. “Well, (I say) there are about 5 of them here”, and she says; “deceased wife.” I walk out of room with her, thinking she just had a quick question, and was going to ask, instead she starts walking me down hall to a conference room. She offers me her condolences, and then asks - with clipboard in hand, "We need to know which funeral home you authorize to pick up the body." I am floored, I look at her in disbelief. I told her my son just got there, no way did I want to miss being in there right now, I can do this later. She says: " This is standard procedure, we can just quick do this now." "No, (I tell her), no funeral home is going to be involved, we are not going to have any nor embalming, etc.“ You should have seen the look on her face. I proceeded to tell her, (after she tried to tell me we couldn't do this) ”You can research this yourself by getting a book at your local library, it is called 'Caring for your own Dead' by Lisa Carlson, and in Ohio and 43 other states this is permitted.“ She said, she needed to call the coroner and get this information to him. He gets on the phone and again, I hear, : "No we can't do this." I tell him the same thing, and he says; "Stay right there, don't go home, I will call legal dept. and get to the bottom of this." I tell him; "No matter what you say, this is how it is going to be, and if you try to say different, you will have a fight on your hands." I gave the phone back to this Supervisor nurse who had no right to do this now, and walked out, left the room. (2nd day, third day could have done this!!!! How sad, they are supposed to be in this for public and they haven't kept up on code?) Supervisor did come back later and apologize, saying she wanted to learn more of this and how it is done. But that needless scene right then, was very distressful. It caused missing some important moments and comforting from and to family & memories.
How on earth do these people think that this is helpful to a family who has just lost a loved one? I wanted to be in with my sons, help comfort them and my grandchildren, and they wanted me to take this from them now????? One has to wonder, how can they abuse their right to get this information from a family member so shortly after a death. Surely most new widows have no idea who, what, where if a death isn't expected. Coroner calls back to room in about 1/2 hr. and says, "Mrs. B. I'm so sorry I neglected to offer you my condolences prior, but it was we weren't used to hearing this, not before, had no idea you could even do this. Yes, you get the burial transportation permit, all else you can do as well. I was thrown off balance before, sorry, guess this is going to be an education for us all here." (Yeah, but sure didn't need to rob me of my time from my family right now about this, I thought, but didn't say.) I thanked him and hung up. We all waited for other family members who might want to come, trickled in and left - immediate family only last 1/2 hour , made plans what to do, who, how, and shared past, hugs and sorrows. This was last time for anyone to see him - went home about 7:30 that evening. We decided funeral should be Fri. at 10 AM, 3 days from now.
2) My sister Harriet picked me up next a.m., we went to hospital about 9:30 got death certificate, (which Bob's doctor had told me would be waiting there for me, when I asked him of it) took it to the local health department and got burial transportation permit (they had already been called and told of this family bypassing the funeral director, and gave us no grief about this now). We stopped home, wrote up a detailed obit, stopped at the newspaper offices, with a death certificate in hand (as I had heard prior from one of our past customers that had purchased a casket from us - that the newspaper would not let them place the obit, that only a funeral director could do it) I wasn't going to let this lack of education get in the way, period. Lady was really nice, "wondered where someone got that information from, as it was wrong." No grief about it, went well, put photo in too, for 2 days run.
3)Need to call my supplier (since I was the retail casket store owner of A Team Master's http://burialitems.com) to order casket Bob wanted (had several in inventory, not what he wanted though, as our ideals were to give him his last wishes). I ordered a stainless steel casket, just like his Dad had been buried in. (They don't rust, etc). Needed now to call cemetery - they need 48 hours prior to service (our paperwork for a family cemetery is going to take 2 -3 plus months, so temporary burial elsewhere) to arrange grave opening for day of burial. Another call to purchase and details of when, where for the grave liner ( two piece concrete box that the casket is lowered into to protect casket from rising if ever a flood, or being dug into if grave being opened next to it, also protect ground from settling if / when casket fails) delivery. But also normally a family that orders a casket for savings, through A Team Masters, also orders this as well from us, for burials. This whole unit would be dug up at a later time and not opened, just put onto truck to be moved to new spot. We had always dealt with this firm prior for others, now first time for immediate family, they would also attend funeral, how special caring people. Most family is calling all other family and friends so no one needs to see it in the paper to learn of this important death. I also call few special people/ friends in his life, and some business associates as well. (Nick Shannon is also adding his poem & eulogy at service. Which he did, tearing-done beautifully on Fri.) end of day 1
4) Now youngest sister Millie and I meet, go to purchase the flowers for the casket, (closed casket full saddle type. Both
sisters (knowing it will be over $250.00) are footing the bill here, said they didn't want to hear of anything else, yet Bob's Mom also wished and did add funds for it later, everyone so very helpful and kind). Flower shop bill comes to just over $300.00 for the ones we pick out. About 5 ft long saddle, really nice natural looking flowers too, for this event. Millie also purchased small checkered flags that were also placed in arrangement. Really impressive, colorful and gorgeous. Many ribbons showing all love as he was husband, father, grandfather, brother-in-law and son.
My oldest son and family come over to spend night, him and I go to pick up casket before 5pm , leaving it in van overnight for next am early really personal event of picking up body. Announcement is now in paper and phone ringing, also many calls yet to make to be sure rest of people know. Both sons and wives, (& sister Millie stopped too) family met for dinner here - food brought by neighbors, so we could do poster boards of photos we all wanted displayed. D-I-Laws Robin and Tammy had brought over many photos both sons wanted in of family and seven grandchildren. We end up with 4 huge boards & couple small ones, lots of frame pictures are being taken to service as well. They arrange them all. With closed casket service, these photos offered many good time feelings, history and shows love of a close family. Write my eulogy, went to bed in time for 2 hrs sleep. Know none would have come if early to bed anyway. Oldest son still up, found out he got 40 min sleep. Hard pressed to write his eulogy, and think of all he wanted to say, & how to word this, tearful loving task. It was beautiful though, he had also put in it a message of salvation for others too. end 2nd day
5) Found out youngest son and wife went to bed with only 2 hours sleep too. Talking up late with his wife, remembering all needed, and they both added to, writing his super nice heartfelt and moving eulogy, as we all were and picking out pictures as well. Both sons and I were at coroners morgue by 7:30 a.m. Fri. and gave the permit for removal of body.
Having spoken to this lady prior, the assistant to the coroner, really helpful and nice person. The boys ( 36 & 34 age, but forever boys to me, proud sons for sure tho) and I were led to a six walled drawer-ed area, she pulled out one, seen a filled body bag there, and stepped back to let us do the rest. She had told us this is the first time in 30 years there a family took charge of a body for burial. She also said she commended us for doing this , and understood it, just didn't know if she could do this herself. Knew the hospital would have him naked in this body bag, when we started, I told sons let's do this the easy way, so we did not uncover his face at first. (Bob had said it would be fine with him if he were buried naked, well, could not do that!) They slipped his legs into pants (his belly so swelled from cancer ascites, folded over waist zipper, left undone). Have a really good friend who is a mortician's daughter, she told me that no dress or suits are ever put on - they always cut the shirt in half up the back and just tuck the ends under the body. They put on the shirt, did that tucking, and then Randy buttoned up the shirt, and we finished this by me putting a racing speedway cap on Bob that Randy had brought. Bob looked at peace and nicely done. They left the body bag under him, rolled it up so they could use it to lift him into the opened casket that they had placed on floor prior, which went well. They rolled him over to remove it. I put the pillow under his head, We asked for a minute of prayer, and then the tears came, closed the casket for the last time. They then rolled the casket to the van, we went to the house so they could change into their clothes they had brought, then we all went to the church. Like I had always teased my husband Bob, he would be late for his own funeral, he nearly was. We arrived at 9:15, the parking lot filling up already. The pall bearers we assigned were there, and carried the casket into the church. (Pastor said funeral directors always had arranged everything prior, so they didn't have something to put the casket on. We had known this and brought 2 wooden barrels, perfect.) Gave Pastor the cd that had the 2 songs on it Bob had picked out, the eulogies for him to read mine and Randy's. Bobby's local pastor from his church also attended and read Bobbys. Now church starts filling up, people share the good times, tears, hugs and the service was super great personable and moving. Everyone was well impressed with this funeral, for this well loved man. “Best funeral anyone could ever want.” “Better than any others had ever went to.“ The fact Lakeside Baptist church attendance was broken - over 250 came, and it was on Fri. Am. Where some couldn't take off work, as they wouldn't get paid for the Memorial holiday on Monday. Someone stopped counting that number, standing room only - and most cars ever in parking lot, parking on grass etc, well, we did good for Bob. Brother-in law said no funeral home would have held us all. Bob would be proud to have brought some people to a church who never would have set foot in (like a neighbor said) and if maybe someone can find God due to this, let that be an added blessing of this special event. Pastor Spargur read his message to the attendees, and at the end added a song, playing his guitar. The church food committee and people brought food for all to share. Most all attending share lunch with us at the church. I hear this time and again. “The funeral event was really so commendable, a blessing, for a proper final good-bye”. Obit requested in lieu of flowers, donations in Bob's name be made to Lakeside church. Also, though, three special flower displays were there, aside from the one atop the casket. One large heart shaped, white, with his stock car #7 on it, in the colors of his stock car, with a bow of checkered flags on it, one beautiful basket with all types of planted flowers, and 1 with white roses and White Lilly flowers flocked in green, on a stand. I thank all that made this day and service so very very special.
For release, if any questions, comments, please call Betty Brown 440-942-8769 firstname.lastname@example.org 262 Shelton Blvd. Eastlake,Oh 44095
4 page Printable copy with few photos, is here at http://www.burialitems.com/misc/bobfrunl.pdf
Bob and myself,
Home page Also, a Poem I wrote, When I Tithe, I cry Tears of Pain