Thomas Vernon Brown, Jr.
July 22, 1927
June 17, 2017
Thomas Vernon Brown, Jr., of Salado, passed away on the morning of June 17, 2017 at Scott & White Hospital in Temple.
He was born in Temple on July 22, 1927 to Thomas V. Brown, Sr. and Frances Lunsford Brown. He was reared by his grandparents, John R. and Wilda Lunsford. His great-grandfather, John Lunsford, was reputed to have been a member of the battery which fired the first shots on Ft. Sumter at the beginning of the War Between the States.
He graduated from Temple High School and attended Temple Junior College. Later, he graduated from Central Texas Peace Officers Academy.
He entered the Navy at age 17 and served on the USS Langley, the Army’s first aircraft carrier. He served in the Pacific theater during the last months of combat followed by missions in the Mediterranean and Atlantic during the wind-down after the war.
After discharge from service, he came home to Bell County and worked for the Santa Fe Railroad. He was an outdoorsman who enjoyed hunting and rodeo in his spare time. He met and on April 16, 1949 married a young nurse, MaryBelle Brown, who was his wife and partner for 68 years. They settled on a small ranch west of Salado where they raised their family.
He worked for many years as operations manager for the Bartlett Electric Cooperative. Later, he moved into a career in law enforcement. He served many years with the Belton Police Department, retiring with the rank of Captain. He then had a second long career with the Bell County Sheriff’s Department. After his official retirement, he continued to serve as a reserve officer in the Salado area, where he was the unofficial “law” in Salado, serving well into his seventies.
He was a devoted member and former Elder of the Salado Church of Christ.
He is survived by his sons, Thomas Vernon Brown, III, of Midland, and County Commissioner Tim Brown, of Salado. He is also survived by his sister, Susan Kennedy, of Santa Fe, New Mexico, and four grandchildren: Thomas Vernon Brown, IV and Kate Brown, of Midland, Roger Allen Smith, of Round Rock, and Lucy Alexis Leonard, of Frisco, together with three great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was an avid student of Civil War history, a devoted member of the Bell County law enforcement community, a story teller and a vicious checker player.
A grave-side service was held at Salado Cemetery at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, June 20 with Bell County Sheriff Department Honor Guard. Joe Keyes, pastor, Salado Church of Christ officiating.
In lieu of flowers, please memorials may directed to the Bell County Sheriff’s Association.
Services under direction of Broecker Funeral Home.