george leonard brown 002BROWN, George Leonard (Len) (Lennie), recently of Fingal, ON, formerly of Astle, NB, passed away at the St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital on Friday, February 15, 2013, with his loving family by his side.  Len was born in Avery’s Portage (Now called Astle), August 7, 1927.  He was a son of the late James Leonard and Maria Louise (nee Palmer) Brown.


Beloved husband of Barbara (nee Peters) Brown.  Dearly loved father Janice Marriott (Donald) of St. Thomas, Shelley MacKenzie (David) of Fingal, and Laurel McTavish (Brian) of St. Thomas. Step-father of Erik Martinez Sr. and Tonya Martinez, both of Florida.  Loved grandpa of Tanya Vernackt, Jerrod Berdan (Heidi), Les McTavish (Jessica), Beverley McTavish (Nic), all of St. Thomas, Kiefer MacKenzie (Lexi) of Calgary, AB, Angus MacKenzie of Fingal, and Erik Martinez Jr. of Florida, and great grandpa of Kayleen Vernackt, Brielle and Alexa Berdan, all of St. Thomas. He is also survived by sister-in-law, Emma Brown of Astle, NB and many nephews and nieces.  Len was loved and will be missed by his furry friends: Scamper, Peppi, and Holly.


Predeceased by his siblings: Harlan, Mabel, and Arthur Murray, paternal half siblings: Joyce, Marjorie and Ross Brown, and maternal half siblings: Eldon, Mary (Mamie), Gladys, Rita, Manley, Regina, Merlin, and Rena Green.


Moving to Woodstock, ON when he was in his early twenties, Len first worked for Massey Ferguson. He then moved to London, ON where he worked for Northern Electric. Len then set up his own building and renovation business. Following that, he was employed at Canada Post from where he retired early due to ill health. Returning to the family homestead in his 60’s, he built a home where he spent his last twenty years.


Len was the Worshipful Master of Prince of Wales Lodge #171, A.F. & A.M., Iona Station, ON in 1975.  In Astle, Len was heavily involved in fundraising to refurbish the local Recreation Centre as a community gathering place suitable for any and all events. He was a strong advocate for seniors’ rights and volunteered at the Central New Brunswick Nursing Home in Boiestown, NB.


Len enjoyed being “back” home where he renewed old friendships and made new ones. He especially treasured the time spent with his nephews and nieces, cousins and extended family in New Brunswick. Being back fishing in the rivers and streams and hunting in the woods of the Miramichi were a dream come true for him. He also enjoyed felling, “Juncking”, splitting and hauling his five cords of firewood on his refurbished tractor. Len was a talented man who could do practically anything he wanted and he did. His was a life well lived and thoroughly enjoyed.


Len was a visionary who understood the world and his place in it very well. His curiosity, intellect, wit, great sense of humour, and interest in everything remained to the end even after he failed physically. In keeping with his wishes, cremation has taken place. A celebration of Len’s life will be held both in ON and NB at later dates.  Memorial donations to the charity of one’s choice gratefully acknowledged.  Arrangements entrusted to the Sifton Funeral Home, 118 Wellington St., St. Thomas, ON (519-631-1160).

Email messages of condolence may be sent to

They that think you are gone,

Because your face no more they see,

Are wrong—for in our hearts you live,

And always will, in memory.

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Filed Under: London, Ontario, St. Thomas