Obituary of Linda Jean Brown
Linda was born in Moose Jaw Saskatchewan and is the oldest of four girls. Her parents, Joan and Russ Markell moved to Shaunavon, Sask when she was 3 years old and she and her sisters all went to a Catholic school until grade 8 and then moved over to the Public School and Public High school. Linda became a cheerleader in High school and began dating one of the football players – Brad Brown. They were high school sweet hearts and were meant for each other. The notation beside her graduation picture in the school yearbook stated “Future Plans – Nurse, Probable Future – “turn Brown”. Linda went on to Nursing School in Saskatoon with Brad visiting her as much as his Alberta drilling rig job would allow. A bit long distance for a few years but the flame never went out. When Linda graduated as an RN from Saskatoon, she got a nursing job at the Holy Cross hospital in Calgary, Ab. That’s where Brad seemed to hang out the most on his days off. When she was told she would be working in the Intensive Care Nursery she was both excited and terrified. That posting turned out to be what she considered the best job in the world. She loved looking after the premature and sick babies although there were many sad and heartbreaking times. It was also challenging, and rewarded Linda with many instances of pride and accomplishment. Linda’s Intensive Care Nursery (ICN) and staff all moved over to the brand new Rocky View Hospital when it was completed. She nursed there for the remainder of her career until she retired. Many of her co-workers commented how Linda was an excellent and caring nurse. Many of the nurses she worked with at the Holy Cross and Rocky View became lifelong friends that kept in touch and visited each other long after retirement.
While Linda was a young nurse in Calgary, she and Brad continued dating and soon moved in together. They bought a house together in 1980 and were married May 16, 1981.
Linda joined the Volunteer ladies group called the “Calgary Samaritan Club” which raised money for the needy and underprivileged persons of Calgary and especially single and abused mothers. Money was raised through Christmas craft sales, giant rummage sales (the size of three school gymnasiums) and casino evenings where one of the local casinos would donate a portion of the casino winnings to various non-profit groups. Linda was very involved with these events and worked in the Cash Count room at the casino quite a few times. She was a volunteer “Samaritan” for 20 years.
In 1988 Linda asked her “Head Nurse” at the Hospital if she could have time off to volunteer for the Winter Olympics as she considered it to be an opportunity of a lifetime. It was granted and Linda volunteered to work for the Calgary 88 Winter Olympics committee and had a few different jobs including showing celebrities and royalty to their seats at the opening and closing ceremonies. One of the jobs she found most interesting was connecting Britain’s Eddie the Eagle ski jumper with the Johnny Carson show. They had called and wanted Eddie on the Johnny Carson show. She helped make it happen. All the thousands of volunteers were treated to a free Beach Boys concert at the Calgary Saddledome when it was all over. When it was over and Linda went back to work at the Nursery she was surprised to find out that the Hospital paid her in full for the shifts she had missed even though she had not worked at the hospital for about a month.
Linda was always a very special Auntie to her nieces and nephews, and later the great nieces and great nephews. She doted on all of them. She especially loved being visited by her family, nephews, nieces, great nephews and great nieces. Some of her happiest moments in life were being with them. I know that some of them referred to Linda as their favourite Auntie.
Linda decided to retire from Nursing in 2003 to be able to spend more time with Brad when he was home and on days off from work. She had been nursing for almost 30 years. She started travelling with Brad to some of the remote worksites to live and be with him more. He was a supervisor so had his own wellsite trailer for them to stay in. She would stay a week or so and then go home to her friends and hobbies. Linda’s mom taught her how to sew and Linda was always sewing something for someone else all her life. She enjoyed it, was good at it and always had a sewing project on the go from her early 20’s to her final days. She entered four of her sewing items into competition at the four day 100th birthday celebration of our home town of Shaunavon, Saskatchewan. She won second and third with three of them and won first prize for her beautiful quilt which was competing against more than 100 other quilts. They were hung up all around the hockey rink for people to view. She was such a talented person.
To fill some of her spare time in retirement she became an extra in the movie industry in Calgary. It was casual with unpredictable hours. She would travel herself or sometimes be bussed to Spruce Meadows, local ranches, small towns or downtown Calgary. She was an extra in quite a few episodes of the TV weekly program “Heartland” and a Hollywood movie called “Burn Up”. It didn’t pay much but she met a lot of interesting people and she enjoyed it.
Linda and Brad did travel some and would usually go for a month or more every couple years. They were to Hawaii twice, Mexico twice, Cook Islands, New Zealand, Dominican Republic, England, Europe and Nova Scotia. Linda always considered her home town of Shaunavon to be home although their goal was to retire to BC somewhere.
After exploring and eliminating the Shuswap area and the Okanagan area, Linda and Brad began looking for retirement property at Kootenay Lake in 2000. They rented a one bedroom cabin in Procter for a month each spring for five years and began the search. They found and purchased their Boswell property in 2004, and spent the summers here until Brad retired in 2013. They then sold their Calgary home and moved to Boswell full time. By then they had met and made some wonderful friends in Boswell and knew they had made the right choice.
Linda quickly became involved in the Boswell community and volunteered and contributed to the Nifty Needlers Quilt Club. She was on several Boswell Hall dinner teams. She was a founding member and Director of the Boswell Historical Society. She was a volunteer Secretary and Treasurer of the Boswell First Responders. She was the Secretary of the Boswell Hall Board of Directors along with many other Boswell Hall duties including arranging memorial services at the Hall for others. Volunteering and contributing to the community that she lived in was a priority for her which she both enjoyed and took seriously. You could always count on Linda. Like a true Nurse she spent much of her life helping others. She loved the Boswell community, her home and her friends. She never said no to a boat ride, a day of fishing, a quad ride close to home or a several day camping and quadding trip. She loved her garden and yard and enjoyed the work it took to keep it up. She was never one to complain, but would calmly make her opinion known if she thought it was necessary.
Linda was a spotless housekeeper, a fantastic homemaker a wonderful wife and a loyal friend. She made friends easily and had many lifelong friends from school, work, community and everything she got involved with. Her family will forever be very proud of her.
Linda had several health scares in her life. She contacted what can be a fatal blood disease, “ITP”, and was treated for several months before getting better. Two years later “ITP” came back and took longer to treat and recover as the drugs used to cure her the first time did not work the second time. A few years later she developed Pancreatitis and had her gall bladder removed to allow her to heal. This last health related trip to the hospital was unexpected, very quick, rare and fatal.
Although she did live a full life and accomplished many goals – Linda was taken from this life too soon as she still had many hopes, dreams, projects and quilts yet to complete.
She will be dearly missed by her husband Brad, her mother Joan Markell, her sisters Gayle (Ron) Brazier, Karen (Leo) Schile, Mary Ann (Bob) Kawaza, sister in law Barb Aldag, brother in law Bruce (Ivy) Brown and many, many nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews, Aunts, Uncles, cousins and friends.
This obituary was written by her husband Brad Brown.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Linda Brown, please visit Tribute Store