James Drake Brown

December 10, 1921July 21, 2013
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James Drake Brown, 91, of Glastonbury, passed away peacefully on July 21st, 2013. He was the beloved husband of Carolyn Peyton Oliver Brown. Jim was born in Hampton, VA on Dec. 10, 1921, a son of the late Col. William Goss Brown of Rye, NH & Ivy Nora Quick of Elton, Louisiana. He was educated in Rye, NH and graduated from High School in Baton Rouge, LA, and from LSU in 1942. He then joined the U.S. Navy and was sent to MIT to study aeronautical engineering. After completion of those studies he married Carolyn and spent the remainder of WWII at the newly commissioned Pawtuxet River Naval Test Air Station in Maryland. Following WWII, Jim was employed at Westinghouse and later at Pratt and Whitney in East Hartford, CT, where he served for many years as a sales engineer. He was especially proud of his work during the early years of the development of fuel cell technology. In this role he enjoyed travels within the U.S. and Japan. Jim was a member of South Glastonbury Congregational Church and Rye Congregational Church in Rye, NH; Orchard Hills Club, Glastonbury, CT, which he helped in founding; and LSU Alumni Association. He threw his heart into serving on the Rye, NH Planning Board as member and as a chairman for many years. Jim was a sax player in the marching band both at Baton Rouge, LA High School and later at LSU. This love of music and his life in the South led to a deep love of New Orleans Jazz. On trips to New Orleans Jim and Carolyn became friendly with many in the New Orleans Jazz Society. He was a devoted fan of traditional jazz in New England, where he and Carolyn often rendezvoused with their favorite groups. Jim was an avid skier. He was particularly excited about his downhill runs in the Bugaboos, British Columbia, during a trip for helicopter skiing. He was very proud of becoming, in his seventies, a Certified Ski Instructor. He loved hiking and generously shared his passion for the White Mountains with family and friends alike. Jim was known as a straight shooter and a square dealer, always living up to a very high code of personal ethics, reaching out to many with a helping hand. Jim is survived by his wife of 69 years, Carolyn Peyton Oliver Brown, who became the love of his life during their years at LSU. They celebrated their 69th wedding anniversary on July 8th of this year. Also surviving are his children: W. Stephen Brown & his wife Judy of Freeport, ME and their daughters, Amy Brown of Brooklyn, NY and Anna Brown & her husband Colin Cheney and their daughter Mirabelle, currently of Bangkok, Thailand; Dr. Philip A. Brown, his wife Lynn and their children Max and Katya of Tunbridge, VT; Nancy Drake Brown of East Hartford, CT and her daughter Chelsea of Portland, OR; his sisters: Louise Oliver & her husband Robert of Fort Worth, TX and Evelyn Southworth Johnson & her husband J. D. Johnson of Wichita, KS, as well as many cherished nieces & nephews, plus a large extended family, from East coast to West and from South to North. The family wishes to thank Danette Brown and the wonderful staff at Buckingham Estates, as well as the skilled and caring Ten-Nine C-P team at St. Francis Hospital. Visiting hours are Friday, July 26th from 4-7:00pm at Glastonbury Funeral Home, 450 New London Tnpk, Glastonbury, CT. A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Saturday, July 27 at 11:00am, South Glastonbury Congregational Church. A Memorial Service and burial will be on September 7th in Central Cemetery, Rye NH, where he spent many fond years among family and community members. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Jim’s memory to South Glastonbury Congregational Church, 949 Main Street, South Glastonbury, CT 06073; Rye Congregational Church, 580 Washington Road, Rye, NH 03870; or to the National MS Society, Greater New England Chapter, P.O. Box 845945, Boston, MA 02284-5945. To leave an online condolence, please visit


  • Visitation Friday, July 26, 2013
  • Funeral Service Saturday, July 27, 2013

James Drake Brown

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John Henze

January 20, 2014

I didn't know Jim very well at all as I only met him once or twice, but Susan often spoke fondly of him. I am sure he will be missed.

Judy Libby Brown

August 26, 2013

My first real hiking experience was with the Brown family. Somehow Jim and I ended up hiking DOWN the Flume Slide Trail - despite all the guide books' advice to only climb UP this trail. Perhaps this adventure was part of the Brown vetting and screening process. Wore out the seat of my pants but evidently passed the test, a year or so later becoming Jim and Carolyn's daughter-in-law. We always shared this fond recollection with a wink and a smile. He was a generous, resourceful and loving man. I have been, and continue to be, deeply blessed - being part of this wonderful family and very special neighborhood.

Pat Pond

August 5, 2013

A good friend and a real gentleman!

Louanne Ouellette-Roy

August 3, 2013

Sorry for your loss Nancy. It's a difficult thing to loose a parent. My thoughts are with you.
Louanne Ouellette-Roy

July 27, 2013

Sorry to hear of Jim's passing. I learned of it while in Rye this week. He was a good friend of and relative to my father Robert (Bob) Goss and helpful to me, too, after my father's passing. My condolences to the entire family.
Cousin Sandra Goss Munsey

Bob McAvoy

July 27, 2013

Steve, Phil and Nancy,

I have great memories of skiing with your dad at Powder Hill and Killington and of family outings to Rye Beach, NH.

My heart goes out to you. Joyce and I are thinking of you.


July 26, 2013

Jim was the finest example of a gentleman. Evie and I have fond memories of trips and great times at Dixieland Jazz Festivals with Carolyn and Jim. Evie & Jack Connors

William Oliver

July 26, 2013

Uncle Jim had an indomitable spirit, and espoused the loftiest ideals. I will always cherish memories of catamaran sailing with him at Rye Beach and long hikes through the White Mountains. He will be missed here, but there is rejoicing in Heaven.

W. Laurence Oliver

Judy Peterson

July 25, 2013

Phil - I didn't know your father but knowing you tells me he was a kind, intelligent and gracious human being. My condolences on your loss.

Tom Hamilton

July 25, 2013

Mrs. Brown, Steve, Phil, and Nancy:

Condolences on your loss.

I have really fond memories of Mr. "B" growing up on Newell Lane. No one could throw a little kid higher in the air than him! Better than any amusement ride (and he caught us every time). And then there was the time I rang your doorbell, selling a wagon full of dandillions, for which he gladly paid me 25 cents.

And many years later as a young adult, I remember a fabulous skiing trip with my dad and Mr. Brown to Zermatt, Switzerland. Skiing in the shadow of the Matterhorn; crossing the Italian border and skiing down to Cervinia for a fabulous and leisurely Italian meal! Life doesn't get any better.

Mr. Brown knew how to enjoy life, and truly lived life to the fullest. He was a man with integrity, passion, and big heart. The world is a better place for him having been in it, and I hope that your memories of him help ease the pain of your loss.