William J. Brown, 95, of Shrewsbury


William J. BrownShrewsbury – William “Bill”  Brown passed away on Sunday September 17 at the age of 95. He had been hospitalized with injuries suffered in a fall. Family and friends were by his side daily, sharing love and stories with him.

Bill was born in Worcester to his parents Everett and Lillian (Dupre) Brown on September 4, 1928. He will be missed by his children David and Jill (Saperstein) Brown of West Brookfield, Karen and Arthur Proulx of Brookfield , Judy and Joseph Faucher of Brimfield, and stepdaughter Susan Proulx of Southbridge. He was predeceased by his first wife Lisa (Johnson) Brown, and his second wife Rita (Proulx) Brown. He had nine grandchildren and ten great grandchildren.

Bill was raised in Shrewsbury where he graduated from Shrewsbury High School in 1945. He was a varsity football player and a member of the high school rowing crew. Shrewsbury boats competed with some of the elite crews of the time.

Following high school Bill joined the US Navy where he served in the Pacific post war efforts. Typical of Bill, while he was stationed on Guam island he was able to scavenge parts and build himself a Jeep for transportation. He was a “fixer” his entire life, always looking to repair, never discarding anything that “somebody can use”.

He started his career as a toolmaker, eventually moving to sales and management where he served as President of Soroco/Southbridge Roofing until he retired in 1989.

His first marriage to Lisa produced three children: David, Karen and Judy. He raised his family in the same Shrewsbury neighborhood he grew up in, with his parents and siblings nearby. Family was always the most important part of life for Bill.

The many, many gatherings leave us with so many stories and fond memories.

His second marriage to Rita was full of fun. With the responsibility of raising children largely behind them, Bill and Rita led a full and active life. They had a large circle of friends and family with many happy get togethers. They traveled extensively together and made friends around the world. It’s only a small exaggeration to say they lived to party.

When Rita passed in 2003, Bill carried on the tradition of pulling his family together for any and every occasion. He loved his family with all his heart, especially as grandchildren and then great grandchildren came along. His grandchildren and their friends loved their Grampa, or G-Pa as some called him. He enjoyed their company and was always there for them.

Bill was a lifelong Mason, member of Matthew John Whittall Lodge in Shrewsbury. He eventually became a Shriner, where he assisted with events at Shriners Auditorium in Wilmington. He especially enjoyed the annual rodeo, earning the nickname “Wild  Bill Brown” after riding horseback into the rodeo ring during introductions.

Bill will always be remembered for his quick smile, his hearty handshake, his sense of humor, his willingness to help anyone with anything anytime, and his total love and devotion to family and friends.

Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend a visitation period on Monday, September 25, 2023, from 1000  – 11:30 am at the Chiampa Funeral Home – 5 Church Road, On the Common, Shrewsbury Center. a short memorial service will be held at 11:30 am, graveside services with military honors will follow at Mountain View Cemetery, Shrewsbury.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to Here Today/Adopted Tomorrow in Brimfield, or Shriners Children’s.

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