A tribute to Deacon William Thomas Brown Sr. of Newport News, VA.
Deacon William Thomas Brown Sr. passed away peacefully on Monday, March 13, 2023, at Riverside Regional Medical Center in Newport News, VA. He was born in Tarboro, NC on May 15, 1943, to the late Theodore Thomas and Florence Kearney Brown.
At a very early age his family moved from North Carolina to Hampton, VA. William attended Phenix High School a segregated public school for African Americans in Hampton, VA. He received his High School GED and enlisted in theUnited States Air Force in June 1961. While stationed at Stewart Field Air Force Base he met and married Katherine Jean Brown on April 1, 1962, in Newburgh, NY. After his release from the Air Force in December 1964, he worked part-time at Saint Luke's hospital.
In 1970, he and Katherine opened and operated a restaurant called the Atmosphere Restaurant. In 1974, with the growing family, they decided to relocate from Newburgh back to his home roots in Hampton, VA. He received his CDL license and became a local truck driver for Yellow Freight, Swift Trucking, and other local trucking companies.
While driving trucks (Bill, Bumpy, Dollar Bill, Buda), just a few names he was known by all over Hampton. William still had a passion to own his own business, again so they opened a small retail store called Jeans ‘N’ Things near Hampton University. He also owned a business called the Tri-City Seafood Market and Game Room on Wickham Ave, Newport News, VA. This was a place wherekids loved the game room while the parents loved the seafood.
He and his family were members of his father's church, Faith Baptist Church in Newport News, VA. In 2002, William became a member of Full Gospel Church and was ordained as a Deacon in 2022. William loved the Lord, first and foremost, and his church family. He was always friendly and willing to help anyone. He always said something to make you laugh and didn’t mind sharing his life experience and anything else on his mind.
He was preceded in death by his parents Reverend Dr. Theodore Thomas and First Lady Florence Brown, brother Reverend Theodore “Teddy” Brown, his oldest son Peter Drafel Brown Sr. aka “Gunn” (Peter Junior, Najee, Andrew, Tea, Manny), and second oldest son Patrick Juan Brown.
William is survived by his wife Katherine Best-Brown, sister Rev. Hazel Harrod of Newport News, VA, daughter Tiffany Chantisse Martinez of Newport News, VA, (Nigel, Chris, Kayla), daughter Jocelyn Holden-Brown of Pittsburgh, PA, (Jasmine), daughter Stephanie Mia Blackshear (Louis) of Dumfries, VA, (Devonne, Amonte and Madison), son Haru Maat El aka “Tommy” of Bronx, NY (Brittany, Corliss, Ashanti, Isaiah) and daughter Vonya Rebie Brown-Watson (Tameka) of Newport News, VA (Eliana), and a host of grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, other relatives and close friends.
He will be missed and is loved by many.
Sleep on William, take your rest. We love you, but God loves you best.
It is the desire of the Brown family that you keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
The family of Mr. William T. Brown Sr., has entrusted his final care to C. C. Carter Funeral Home, Inc.
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