Gwendolyne Brown

Gwendolyne Jeanne Hansen Brown, 91, of Newport, went to heaven Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019, after a long battle with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease at the Lighthouse Village Assisted Living in Jacksonville.

Interment will take place at a later date at the Calhoun Cemetery in Harrison, Iowa.

She was born Jan. 6, 1928, to Albert and Lola Olinger Hansen in Missouri Valley, Iowa, and was raised in the farming community of Modale.

Gwen married Kenneth L. Brown in 1946 when he returned to the United States after his liberation from a Japanese Prisoner of War camp, where he was interned for almost four years during World War II. His unit had been captured on Wake Island shortly after the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

From their union four children were born, Lola, Larry, Ronald and Reneé. Kenny passed away in 1954 leaving Gwenny to raise their children. She worked first in the lunchroom at Modale School until she was able to secure a position as a teller at Modale Savings Bank. She continued her banking career until her retirement in 1993.

After retirement, Gwenny dedicated her life to her family and also as a 20-year docent at the Henry Doorley Zoo in Omaha. She loved animals and cared for many stray cats.

Gwenny moved to Newport in 2012 to live with her daughter Reneé and her husband Kevin. She shared in their love of boating and the beaches. For several years she was able to volunteer for the Emerald Isle Sea Turtle Patrol walking the beach, searching for sea turtle tracks, followed by nest sitting and waiting for the nests to hatch. Although she dearly missed her life and friends in Modale, she happily joined in on these new hobbies.

She faced every challenge presented to her with great strength and humility.

Gwenny is survived by her daughter, Renee Olkowski and husband Kevin of Newport; sons, Larry Leroy Brown and wife, Martha of Tyler, Texas, and Ronald Kenneth Brown of Mulberry, Fla.; brother, Norwood O. Hansen and wife Ann of Rapid City, S.D.; grandson, Tony Clark and wife Jana of Council Bluffs, Iowa; seven grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; and three great-great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Kenneth Leroy Brown; mother, Lola Jeanne Hansen; father, Albert Fredrick Hansen; daughter, Lola Lorraine Clark; daughter-in-law, Joyce Brown; and brother, Robert R. Hansen.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in Gwendolyne’s memory to the Emerald Isle Sea Turtle Patrol, 312 West Firetower Road, Peletier, NC 28584.

Arrangements are by Munden Funeral Home & Crematory Inc. of Morehead City. Family and friends are welcome to submit online condolences at

 (Paid obituary)

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