Virginia A. Brown, 92 of Glendale, NY passed away peacefully surrounded by her family on September 11, 2023. Virginia was the beloved wife of the late Harold R. Brown who passed away on October 6, 1992. They were married on September 20, 1952 and celebrated 40 years of marriage before his passing. Virginia Brown was born on February 28,1931 in Brooklyn, NY to the loving parents Edward and Viola Merritt Lasher. Virginia was one of 7 children living a happy and wonderful family life on Mc Donough Street in Brooklyn, NY with her brothers and sisters, Viola, Dorothy, Mary, Eddie, Johnnie and Drake. Virginia went to Good Counsel and High School in Brooklyn and there she met the love of her life, Harry Brown. After High School she went to work in an office in the Flat Iron Building in NYC where she worked for 6 months. They married in the September after High School and moved to Queens and she became a Homemaker. They settled in Glendale, NY and they began a family and had 4 children, Steven, Harold, Charles and Virginia. Virginia loved to teach Religion and she became a Religious Ed CCD teacher at Sacred Heart Church for over 20 years. Virginia’s love to help others lead her and her husband to open one of NYC’s first homeless shelters in the late 1980’s after a plea from Mayor Ed Koch to open shelters in Churches across NYC. For the next 25 years Virginia ran the Homeless Shelter and organized a group of 300 volunteers on a monthly basis to cook for, wash their laundry and house the homeless 5 nights per week for 6 months per year. In the homeless shelter she found such joy and happiness in volunteering to help the homeless. The shelter became know as “the Waldorf Astoria of shelters”. They had a home cooked dinner together and then watched TV each night. Virginia had a great love of traveling the World. She traveled alone on one of the first cruises to Alaska where she toured by helicopter in the late 1980’s. Virginia and Harold loved the beach and traveled throughout the Caribbean. Virginia shared her wanderlust with her daughter Virginia and they traveled together extensively throughout the US to the National Parks and any scenic spot they could find to stop and “sit for a while”. They then went onto travel on African Safari, China, Egypt, Costa Rica, Europe and the Caribbean. Virginia spent her days reading the NY Times from cover to cover and NY Times best sellers at the rate of 3 per week. Virginia loved playing Bingo and going to the Casino, Estate Sale shopping, gardening, bird watching, cooking, gourmet food stores and going to any food establishment to “see what’s interesting”. Virginia loved sewing and crocheting blankets which she made for 100’s of family and friends. Her love of the beach was her rest and relaxation and she spent her Summers with her family in Atlantic Beach, NY at the Ocean Club where she was a member for over 50 years. Up until her last week she wanted to go and take long drives with her daughter to “see what’s out there” and they drove thru country roads to see the sights, grab a snack and stop along the way. Virginia always wanted to get in the car and drive everywhere at any time of day. After all her travels she longed to get home to her beloved home in Glendale and look at all of her “treasures” she bought along the way. Two weeks before she passed as she sat and looked out on the Long Island Sound she told her daughter Virginia something that can sum up the essence of her life. “you can have a million dollars in the bank but when you leave this Earth you can’t take it with you. What will matter most in life is if you reached out to help someone in need, shared a smile with someone who was lonely, held someone’s hand when they needed you and feed the hungry not just with food but with love. When you do that with all of your heart then you were really alive and also don’t forget enjoy the view along the way”. Words to live by. God Speed Virginia. Virginia is survived by, her daughter Virginia and her partner Lou Amendola who she loved and cherished as her own son and her son Charles and Granddaughter, Melissa.
Family and friends are invited to Pleasant Manor Funeral Home, Inc. 575 Columbus Avenue - Thornwood, New York 10594 on Thursday, September 14, 2023 from 3:00 - 8:00 PM for visitation. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Sacred Heart Catholic Church 83-17 78th Avenue Queens, New York 11385 on Friday, September 15, 2023 at 11:30 AM. Virginia will be laid to rest at St. Charles Cemetery in Farmingdale, New York following the funeral mass.
In lieu of flowers, the family kindly asks that donations in Virginia’s memory be made to:
Missionaries of Charity
262 Macon Street
Brooklyn, New York 11216
The Rogosin Institute