- About Us
Gene E. Brownlee SrSeptember 22, 1949 ~ June 30, 2017 (age 67)
Gene Edward Brownlee, Sr. was born September 22, 1949 to the proud parents of Wilburn and Almeda Brownlee. After nearly two years of fighting what appeared to be the fight of his life, Gene transitioned to glory on June 30, 2017 surrounded by his wife and children.
II Corinthians 4:17 says, “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.”
On June 10, 1967, Gene married the love of his life, Dorothy Ann Green. To this union was born four beautiful children. From them came twelve grandchildren and six great grandchildren. Gene was one of seven sons and twin to the only sister. He was everyone’s favorite uncle, a faithful brother, and loving cousin. For Gene, his family – near and far – was everything. Some of his children’s fondest memories are summer road trips to visit relatives and close family friends across the United States from the deep south to the bustling streets of Detroit, Chicago, Northwest Indiana, and Beloit, Wisconsin.
Gene confessed his hope in Christ and was baptized at an early age in the name of Jesus at Christ Temple Church, under the leadership of the late pastor, District Elder Henry W. Jones. In 1984, during the church’s annual trip to Leavenworth, KS, he received the gift of the Holy Ghost. Under the pastorate of Bishop E.C. Haywood, he renewed his faith and served in several capacities within the church. Gene was a member of the Usher Board, Sunday School, Brotherhood, and the Young People’s Department where he faithfully assisted his wife in her leadership of the Northeastern District of the Apostolic Bible Students Association. In 2010, Gene felt led of the Lord to move his membership to Emmanuel Apostolic Church under the then leadership of Elder Roy Pennington, where he remained a faithful member until his death.
Gene graduated from Central High School in 1968 where he had excelled athletically and competed in state track competitions with great success. Upon graduation, he received an academic and athletic scholarship to Indiana University Bloomington. But, due to his new marriage and growing family, he decided to remain in Fort Wayne where he entered the workforce in order to be a strong provider for his family. This, in essence, became the theme of his life, always giving of himself sacrificially for those whom he loved and held most dear. In 2004, Gene retired from Kroger Distribution Center and soon thereafter, began a career with Dana Corporation. In 2014, he retired from Dana and spent his remaining days being an exceptional grandfather and caregiver to his grandchildren.
In addition to his family, Gene cared for his community. He was outgoing, friendly, well-liked by all and never met a stranger. Gene was an avid reader and sports enthusiast who loved to race his sons and the neighborhood kids just to prove that “he still had the juice!” He served as a coach, “surrogate father”, and mentor to young boys from the late 1970s to the mid-1980s at Weisser Park Little League. He also participated with his three sons in the Police Athletic League football program. Gene served as a Block Captain/Neighborhood Advocate for Branning Hills Neighborhood Association and most recently, enjoyed being a member of the Birthday Club (a Christian social club for mature adults).
Gene leaves to cherish his memory, his wife of 50 years, Dorothy Brownlee; three sons, Gene Brownlee, Jr., Corey (Charine) Brownlee, and Albert (Tamarah) Brownlee, all of Fort Wayne; one daughter, Gina (Jamal) Brooks of Fort Wayne; twelve grandchildren, Shelisa Fikes, Bre’Auna (James) Raines, Shawnika Jones, Cameron (Brittany) Brooks, Narvell Taylor, Ayana Brooks, A’bby Raymond Brownlee, Sharell Brownlee, Shanell Brownlee, Daniel Brownlee, Ethan Brownlee, Mackenzie Brownlee, and six great grandchildren, Jordan Raines, Journey Raines, Joah Raines, Kendall Jones, Karsyn Brooks, and Kamryn Johnson Brooks, all of Fort Wayne; two brothers, Henry (Dorothy) Wilson and Albert (Gloria) Smith both of Fort Wayne; a twin sister, Jenetta (Clarence) Knox of Indianapolis; and three sister-in-laws, Catherine Wilson, Claudine Woodberry, and Everleina (Lawrence) Wattley; numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, and a host of other relatives and friends.
Gene was preceded in death by his parents, Wilburn and Almeda Brownlee, and four brothers, A.Q. Brownlee, Wilbert Brownlee, Conrad Smith, and Nathaniel Wilson.