L. Charlene Brown - 1941 - 2019


Linda “Charlene” Brown passed away August 6, 2019, in McMinnville, Oregon, at the age of 77.
Charlene was born October 7, 1941, to Franklin and Edna Kauble in McMinnville. She soon became the older sister to Karen, Franklin Jr. and John "Jack." She spent most of her life in Willamina, graduating from Willamina High School in 1959. On October 11, 1959, four days after her 18th birthday, Charlene married Robert Rolland Brown.
After high school, Charlene attended business college, becoming a bookkeeper and secretary. She worked as a clerk for a Salem attorney prior to becoming secretary at Willamina High School in the 1960s.
In the 1970s, she partnered with Bob to raise their three children and run their grocery store, “Bob’s One Stop Market." As the town’s librarian, she developed and taught Story Time, a preschool reading program. She also served as bookkeeper for Bill Brown Construction and was a member of the Willamina Fire Department Women’s Auxiliary and library board.
Charlene also worked as a secretary for the Willamina Middle and High schools, deputy clerk for Willamina School District and City Recorder for the City of Willamina before retiring in 1997.
After her retirement, Charlene went on to become the town’s local historian, playing a large part in developing the Willamina Historical Group and Willamina Museum of Local History. She wrote several newspaper columns and books focused on the town’s early years and the lives of its residents.
She enjoyed volunteering as a S.M.A.R.T. reader, reading to children at Willamina Elementary School. Most of all, she enjoyed watching her grandchildren and great-grandchildren gather on her lap and listen to her read a story.
Charlene is survived by her husband of 59 years, Bob Brown; her three children, James Brown, Lynne (James) Shore, and Jeff(Connie) Brown, all of Willamina; nine grandchildren; and 15 great-grandchildren.
Donations in Charlene’s honor may be made to the Willamina Museum of Local History through Willamina City Hall. A private graveside service will be held at Buck Hollow Cemetery.


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