George Vincent Brown III

George Vincent Brown III, born March 26, 1937, son of George V. Jr. and Ellen Frances (Crowe), graduated Brookline High School class of 1954 and Harvard College, 1958.

After a brief stint in The Army National Guard, he joined John Hancock Insurance as a mortgage loan analyst in 1959.

Among his accomplishments at Hancock were the financing of the property which became the city of Aventura, Fla., the Watergate complex in Washington D.C. and the Hancock building in Chicago.

He married Eleanor Anne Coppola in February 1960. That marriage dissolved in 1992. He joined Ford Motor Credit Co. as director of commercial real estate lending in 1969, served as vice president, commercial industrial and real estate lending before joining Ford Motor as executive director- financial services group, from which position he retired in 1993. During his tenure at Ford, he was instrumental in acquiring First Nationwide Financial Corp., U.S. Leasing, and the Associates Finance Company. He also spearheaded the financing of the Renaissance Center in Detroit.

On his retirement, he moved to the resort community of Saugatuck-Douglas. He became active in civic affairs, serving as chair of the Douglas Planning Commission, member of the Douglas Historic Preservation committee, and Treasurer of his church.

In December 1993 he became the life partner of Gregory (Gregg) M. Kurek, they were married in New York in 2011.

Brown discovered a love of painting after attending a summer session at The Oxbow School of Art in Saugatuck in 1993. He opened his own studio-gallery in Douglas from 1999 to 2004.

In recent years he has divided his time between Michigan and Fort Lauderdale, Fla. where he became a full time resident in 2015.

As a full time resident, George became an active member of the United Church of Christ Fort Lauderdale where he chaired the Chancel redesign and renovation and was the visionary and driving force in the development of the Garden of Memories. He also volunteered his time as a garden and grounds tram tour driver at the historic Bonnet House.

His greatest joy was that of being a first tenor in the Gay Men’s Chorus of South Florida where he was able to join in not only in song but also in brotherhood with his fellow chorus members.

George was preceded in death by his father George V. Brown, Jr.; his mother Ellen Francis Crowe; and a younger brother Walter.

He is survived by his husband Gregg M. Kurek; four children, George V. IV (Loren), Elizabeth Ronan Gates, Andrew David, and Peter Robert (Jaye Chen); nine wonderfully talented grandchildren, Ryan Gates, Amanda Gates, Emmett Brown, Ray Brown, Lucius Brown, Alyssa Vincent, Jasper Brown, Imogen Brown and Graham Brown; and a brother, Ray and Eleanor Coppola Brown.

Celebrations of Life are planned for the spring in Fort Lauderdale and in the summer in Douglas.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Gay Men’s Chorus of South Florida, 2040 N. Dixie Hwy., Ste. 218, Wilton Manors, FL 33305

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