Gerald Arthur Brown, 66, of Haddonfield, N.J., who loved life, his family, tennis and a clean car, died on Oct. 13 with his wife at his side. Jerry, as family and friends called him, had been battling bladder cancer for more than two years.
He is survived by his wife Margaret Rees, daughters Emily Brown and Kate Brown, son-in-law Frank McElroy, brothers Robert Brown, Richard and Jules Fekete, sister-in-law Jan Fekete, and many, many close friends.
Jerry was raised in Levittown, Pennsylvania by the late Al and Rosemary Brown. As a child, he survived a serious car accident and spinal meningitis. At 18-years-old he was drafted into the US Army and served one tour in the Vietnam War as a combat photographer. Friends and family joked that he was invincible, but Jerry explained to his daughters that he survived because he was meant to marry their mother and become their dad.
When Jerry returned from Vietnam, he attended Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, CA.
In 1975, he met Margaret Rees at a party in Bensalem, PA and courted her for more than four years. The two married in January of 1979 and moved to Haddonfield in 1980, where they raised their daughters and became an integral part of the community and made many friends whom they consider family.
Jerry built a successful career as an independent sales representative for various camera and audio-visual companies. Colleagues attributed his success in business to his generous and honest reputation, and to his witty, delightful personality. Jerry loved his job, his customers, and his colleagues. Since he worked out of his car, he took it to the car wash nearly every day.
As an avid tennis player, Jerry organized a popular Saturday morning tennis league and was an active member of the Haddonfield Tennis Association. He was known amongst his tennis friends for his wicked serve, colorful swearing, inclusiveness, and sense of humor. Also a cooking enthusiast, Jerry was a favorite customer at Arnie’s butcher shop and Severino’s. Every evening, smells of Jerry’s culinary creations wafted down the block, and the neighborhood could hear him singing and chastising various kitchen appliances while he cooked.
Jerry Brown was a vocal, joyous, and kind person and was justifiably loved by many. He was a devoted husband and the best dad his girls could have asked for. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
Jerry’s family will receive friends on Thursday, Oct. 17, 9:30 to 10:45 a.m., at Christ the King RC Church, 200 Windsor Ave., where his Memorial Mass will follow at 11 a.m. Interment is private.
In lieu of flowers, Jerry’s family requests donations are made in his name to Samaritan Hospice, 5 Eves Dr., Suite 300, Marlton, NJ 08053.