Jack Leroy Brown

05/17/1939 - 05/27/2024


Obituary For Jack Leroy Brown

Jack Brown was born May 17, 1939, in Seattle, Washington to Jesse (Bob) Theodore Brown and Salome (Sally) Rebecca Amundson. The family moved to Double Bluff on Whidbey Island in about 1945, later moving to Freeland.

Jack enjoyed the freedom of growing up on the island and he thoroughly explored the woods, lakes and beaches. He fondly remembered the clam bakes with freshly dug clams and crab caught that day and the big family gatherings they had there on the beach on his grandmother's land.

Jack and his sister started the first ‘Running Club’ in their high school. Marilyn says that Jack also won the school hoop shoot contest as well as being the fastest running back around in football. Once he caught the ball, no one could ever catch him. Jack told me he could run 25 miles an hour at 15 years old. He remembers that his 40-yard dash time was 4.32 seconds as a freshman in high school at Langley, he knows he was faster but was never timed again. He thinks he reached a peak at about 22 years old. He could run the race 10 times in a row without his time going down. Many of his memories revolved around his time of playing running back for the Langley Falcons. Jack graduated from Langley High School in 1957, leaving home that night, he took the ferry to Seattle to stay with relatives in Ballard and began work the next morning at Western Electric.

Jack joined the Navy on October 29, 1957, in Naval Aviation. He played football in the Navy and boxed. He enjoyed working on the engines of the planes and was highly skilled. He worked on the F9 Cougar which was the first jet to shoot down another jet. He was discharged on April 28, 1962, and returned to Whidbey Island.

He married Judy Harm in April 1963, and moved to California to work for United Airlines as a mechanic. Their two daughters, Diana and Suzanne were born in San Mateo, California. They moved back to Washington in 1966 and Jack began work for the Seattle Police Department in December of 1966. Jack and Judy divorced in 1968.

Jack and one of his SPD partners were known as the “terror twins”. He was engaged in one shootout at the Bush Hotel in the 70s and chased many a bad guy on foot and police car. One chase in particular was uphill through blackberry bushes in downtown Seattle – Jack outran him and caught the felon, but his jacket was in shreds. Jack told me he broke the Seattle Police Department record in agility training – they made him take the test over again because they thought they had mistimed it. He always mentioned that he was glad he never shot anyone although he always earned a yearly Marksman pin to wear on his uniform. He left the department in September of 1978.

Jack married Margaret Smith Sjodin on December 29, 1972, in Seattle. Their daughter, Jennifer Anne Brown, was born the 11th of June 1975. They lived in Seattle, Sun Valley, Idaho, Bellevue, Redmond, finally settling in the south Puget Sound area to be nearer to family.

Jack held many jobs during his lifetime: United Airlines Mechanic, Seattle Police Officer, Insurance Salesman, self-employed house painter, King County Metro Driver, University of Washington U Temps Driver, Lacey O’Malley Bail Bondsman, Driver at Grey Line of Seattle, Northwest Legal Support, and Easy Access, Security Guard at G4S and one last job at McDonalds for one day taking orders.

Always a dedicated golfer, he won several trophies playing in the Seattle Police Department golf tournaments. He ran three Seattle marathons and loved to hike, McClennan Butte being one of his favorite routes. Jack enjoyed making jokes and up to the end he would try to spin a tale that would draw some unsuspecting person in and then laughing, when once again, he had gotten away with a tall tale. Jack was a kind man, loving, fierce, strong, always protective of his family and he loved the grandkids. John Wayne was his favorite actor and he liked country music from the 50’s. His Mother and Aunt once met and sang with Patsy Cline.

Jack is survived by his wife, Margaret Brown of Covington; daughter Jennifer Gilbert (husband Matt), of South Prairie; son J. Patrick Sjodin (wife Susan); of Naselle; sister Marilyn Williams (husband Karl), of Cornville, Arizona; grandchildren Katie, Jonathon, & Nathaniel Gilbert; Kevin & Aaron Boni; Taylor Forsberg Kovacs; Cassidy Forsberg Nunes; Nick, Emma & Joshua Sjodin; Nicole & Christina Hopkins; and greatgrandchildren; Mackenzie, Wesleigh, Katie, Kelsey & Derrick Kovacs; Addison, Dakota & Jaden Nunes; nephews, Joel, Bret & Paul Christoe; Ron Brown and niece, Joye Brown Viet.

Jack was preceded in death by his brothers Gerry and Robert Brown, and his daughters, Suzanne Souza and Diana Cormier.

Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God.

A memorial reception will be held on Monday, June 10, 2024 at 3:00 p.m. at Vineyard Park at Covington, Activity Room, 17016 SE Wax Rd, Covington, WA. Please call 206-229-3786 for details.

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