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Nell Pittman Brown
(June 23, 1918 - March 31, 2011)

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Nell Pittman Brown, age 92, of Howard, Ga., died March 31, 2011, following a battle with cancer. She died peacefully at her daughter’s home in Oconee County under compassionate care provided by St. Mary’s Home Hospice. Lucy Nell Brown was born June 23, 1918, in Quitman, Ga., a daughter of the late Malcolm and Bessie Pittman. She began her education in the historic schoolhouse in Mauk, Ga., graduated from Butler High School, and enrolled in business coursework. She taught school and worked for a transit company in Macon before marrying her husband, William M. Brown of Howard, Ga., on February 29, 1944. She and her husband, who died January 6, 1980, raised three children on the family farm near Howard, where she managed their poultry and egg production business. Nell Brown was an intelligent and energetic lady, well-read in both modern and classic literature. She was an informed and gifted conversationalist, enjoyed fishing with family members and friends, and had special interests in politics, nature, and astronomy. Her passion for observing the movement of the planets in the early morning hours once resulted in a fall and broken wrist, when she stumbled outside her home while looking upward to identify Venus. She faithfully set out hummingbird feeders each year, and was excited to see the arrival of new varieties of the tiny creatures each spring. She often recalled, happily and with vivid memory, seeing migrations of monarch butterflies, formations of flying waterfowl, and solar and lunar eclipses. She was intrigued by space travel and greatly enjoyed news of NASA launches and exploratory missions. She was a faithful member of the Howard United Methodist Church and was active in community and civic life. She served as an elections poll sitter for her precinct, and was a volunteer for the annual Howard Fourth of July barbecue which benefited the local community center. She easily made friends and enjoyed their companionship. She was part of a large and loving family, and reached out to them in times of need. She stayed in the homes of two sisters and nursed them and their husbands through their illnesses and eventual deaths. Throughout her lifetime, family members and friends would seek her counsel and advice on any and all matters. Nell was diagnosed with melanoma in January of 2011, and was treated by physicians in Athens who were at first skeptical of her ability to tolerate chemo and radiation therapy. She astounded and delighted her doctors with positive results from the treatments, and called to their attention that the drug taken for the cancer had dramatically improved her eyesight that earlier had been affected by macular degeneration. This information was communicated by her doctor to the drug company which acknowledged her valuable observation. Nell immediately connected with all of her caregivers which resulted in new friendships that sustained her in her last months. Nell Brown was pre-deceased by her husband, Bill; by her eldest son, Don Brown; by her siblings John William “Duke” Pittman, Clyde Pittman, Malcolm Belmont “Junior” Pittman, Margaret Pittman, Musette Pittman, Sara Pittman Pruitt, and Anna Pittman Conant. She is survived by her daughter, Susan Brown Landrum (Tom), of Oconee County; son, Mel Brown (Denise), of Howard; sister, Johnnie Pittman Waller of Charing; sister-in-law Gaynell Pittman of Butler; daughter-in-law Dorothy Brown Swearingen (Ed), of Reynolds; grandchildren Christa Brown Ward (Jimmy), of DeRidder, La., Jeb Stuart Brown (Amanda) of Statesboro, Tempe Landrum Stephen (Chris) of Alexandria, Va., great-grandchildren Taylor DeVito, Hollywood, Fla., Caden Jeb Brown, Statesboro; Wiley Andrew Ward, DeRidder, La., and numerous nephews, nieces, grand-nephews and grand-nieces. Funeral services will be held Sunday, April 3, at 3 p.m. in Howard United Methodist Church, Howard, Ga., with Reverend Mark Sasser officiating. Interment will follow in the church cemetery. The family will receive friends Saturday, April 2, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Edwards-McLeighton Funeral Home, 39 West Main St., Butler, Ga., 31006. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the Howard United Methodist Church, Highway 96, Howard, Ga., 31039. Edwards – McLeighton Funeral Home of Butler is in charge of arrangements.

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