Brenda Jo Dillon

July 22, 1954July 11, 2013
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DILLON, Brenda J age 58 went to be with the Lord July 11, 2013. Preceded in death by father, Grady McDuffie. Survived by loving husband, Dan Dillon; children, Sonnet (Michael) Pentecost, Braden (Staci) Trevino, Christopher Trevino; step daughter, Angie (Keith) Waller; mother, Dr Alice Gray McDuffie Caruso; sisters, Donna Mullen, Kelly Watts; 7 grandchildren. Brenda was an active member of Hermitage United Methodist Church & American Council of the Blind. She was kind, loving and a gentle soul she was a wonderful wife, mother, grandmother and friend she will truly be missed by all. Funeral Services Monday July 15th 1 pm at Hermitage United Methodist Church with visitation one hour prior to service. Visitation with family Sunday, July 14th 4 pm until 8 pm at Hermitage Funeral Home


  • Visitation Sunday, July 14, 2013
  • Funeral Service Monday, July 15, 2013

Brenda Jo Dillon

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Faith Cardinael

August 14, 2013

Brenda was the most interesting person I have ever met. She was also the kindest. We would spend hours on the phone together, looking online for any nautical or beachy thing that she could think of. She was so passionate about life and nature. She is a treasure to me because she gave me a glimpse into a life that I always thought would be empty, boring, and futile. She taught me how full life can be, even with limitations that might hold a person down. I am so grateful to her and Dan for their friendship. If it weren't for Brenda and Dan, I would never have known what beauty and opportunity there can be in a sightless world. I will never forget you, Brenda.
Love, Faith

Marsha Farrow

August 13, 2013

When I remember my friend Brenda Dillon, I can honestly say she was one of the most brilliant women that I have ever known. The evening before the final surgery, I had a wonderful phone conversation and told Brenda how much she and Dan meant to me and to ACB. Brenda's ability to interact with a sighted world was nothing short of miraculous! She loved her children and grandchildren so deeply and strived to provide each one with unique gifts and opportunities. As for her love for her best friend and husband Dan, there is simply no way to measure that devotion and commitment. She worked extremely hard to encourage him to shine and was always willing to assist him in his personal goals. Brenda spoke of her loving mother who had been there for her in some very difficult and dark journeys. She loved her sisters and her sisters had shared her struggles as Brenda faced life as a youngster without sight finding her place in a sighted world. Brenda shared stories of her Grandmother's love and had written a song about her that she and Dan sang at an ACB Convention. To my dear friend Brenda I say “Go rest high on that mountain girl your work on earth is done. Go to Heaven a shoutin your love for the Father and the Son!” Dan, mom and sisters, children and grandchildren, cherish all of those loving memories and when you find yourself missing her so terribly, sing a song of hope; because Brenda is singing with the angels!

Chris Gray

August 12, 2013

Dear Brenda:

Your warm and caring nature are what come to my mind first, whenever I think of you. Right behind that comes your energy, creativity and belief in doing the right thing. Your commitment to others has been inspiring and it never seemed to waiver. We will miss your warmth and enthusiasm for life.


Leslie and Dan Spoone

August 12, 2013

Our first impression of Brenda was WOW! We met her in Orlando at the 2009 ACB Convention. She was so full of energy running the Auction. We won the Nashville trip and really got to know Brenda and Dan over our weekend stay. We attended the TPAC performance of little House on the Prairie and went over to their house for dinner and games. Brenda made us all chili and pie. We laughed, sang songs and played games until two in the morning. We ate so much chili that Brenda had to unzip her pants for comfort. I always called her unzipped from that point forward.

Our friendship just grew stronger and stronger from that point forward. We went on vacations in Hilton Head and Daytona Beach. She really loved the beach and the sound of the waves. We were also constant companions at all the subsequent ACB conventions and Board meetings. She was a wonderful mentor for both Dan and I, teaching us the ropes of ACB. She encouraged us to get involved with the auction and RDC committees and really made us feel like we were part of the gang.

We miss Brenda so much and are so thankful she has been part of our lives. We miss you, unzipped.


Carol Francisco

August 11, 2013

There are so many memories of Brenda, after all I knew her for about 20 years.

Several years ago she nominated my husband, Orlando, to receive an award which provided all expenses paid to attend the national convention We had a wonderful time and the financial assistance was very helpful to us.

Of course my husband and I enjoyed eating at Brenda and Dan's home as she was an excellent cook. We also went to various restaurants with them.

The best time I spent with Brenda was a week we spent in Florida. Six of us stayed in a condo near Daytona Beach. We were busy every minute, at the beach, going out to dinner, shopping and even touring a chocolate candy factory, She had the trip very well organized and everything went smoothly. We even had lots of food to share and games to play on the bus to help pass the time. My brother and his wife and also my sister live in that area, which was why I joined the group. They also met Brenda and joined in some of our activities. I have just returned from Florida and they were very sad to hear about Brenda.

Brenda's energy, musical talent and all the hard work she did for several organizations will be missed.

There are no words of comfort that I can offer at a time like this. We all cope in our own way, a day at a time and sometimes an hour at a time. I can only hope that my words and the words of Brenda's many friends can bring some comfort and a smile to all who loved and will miss Brenda.

Donna Seliger

August 11, 2013

Oh, Brenda! You were such a dear friend. We had so little time to spend together, but we had a lot of laughs and a good deal of talk about life. I admired you from our first meeting. I know you are in a better place and I hope to see you again someday. This is part of God's plan even though we question why. --Donna Seliger, Iowa

Lori Ward

August 10, 2013

Brenda was the ultimate friend—fun and funny, thoughtful and compassionate, a good talker and a great listener. She was creative, enthusiastic, adventurous, and intelligent with an extraordinary memory and a sharp wit, though she often viewed the world with childlike wonder. I picture her in my mind's eye. I see the loving smile on her face as she held a baby. I see her trying to sit still and contain herself when she was excited about a new idea or was anticipating an event about to happen. I recall the glimmer of a pleased smile when she won a word game. I remember her resolute confidence and poise when she made formal introductions of people like the Mayor of Nashville to a group.

In the week prior to her first surgery in April, Brenda was determined to “Iive it up.” Imagine the enthusiasm and forceful expression in her voice as she repeatedly declared “I am going to live it up” that week, when one of her activities was the annual unveiling of the Broadway shows coming to the Tennessee Performing Arts Center. Of course, they all sounded fabulous to her and she wanted to see every single one.

With Dan, Brenda helped to make a tremendous difference in individual lives through the services we offer at TPAC to make theatre accessible to everyone. Her advocacy on the local, state and national level made a difference in the lives of thousands of people who never knew her. As she did with all of her friends, Brenda came into my life and made a difference. To quote a gift she gave, inscribed with a quote by Helen Keller, “The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt within the heart.” That's how many of us will remember Brenda—the best, the most beautiful, and always in our hearts.

August 10, 2013

Dear Brenda,
I'll always remember your zest for life and your tireless dedication to the American Council of the Blind. Sharing a meal with you and Dan was a favorite memory of many ACB national events. While we all miss you terribly, I am comforted that you're pain free and offering your precious self to your new home.
Bob Hachey
Waltham, Massachusetts

Sue Burdyshaw

August 9, 2013

to Brenda:

God took your hand tonight,
And then He led you home.
I know you're safe with Him,
And you'll never be alone.

He let your eyes see again,
And He made your body whole.
I know you're now an angel with Him,
I know He has blessed your soul.

Even though I know this is right,
And I know He was with you at the end,
I am saddened tonight
For I have lost a very dear and precious friend!

Rest in peace, dearest Brenda.
I will forever treasure the memories we made together.
In honor of a thirty-year friendship.
Thursday, July 11, 2013

Sue Burdyshaw

Billy Jo Higgins

August 8, 2013

Brenda, a true friend and inspiration. She was a talent and blessing. I loved singing with her, shopping and hanging out, having her give me directions, going to the beach, having her teach my family games on long road trips, listening to her describe things and events in detail. I know I have someone special watching over me, but I ache for her physical presence.