Judith M. "Judy" Brown
Merritt Funeral Home
800 Monroe Street
Mendota, IL
Judith 'Judy' M. Brown

Born: February 1, 1939; Melrose Park

Died: June 24, 2021; Geneva

GENEVA – Judith "Judy" May Brown (Warren), 82, of Geneva and Big Fork, Montana and formerly of Oak Park, passed away peacefully at home in Geneva, surrounded by family on Thursday, June 24, 2021 after a valiant 6-year battle with gallbladder cancer.

Judy, the third of four children, was born on February 1, 1939 in Melrose Park to Dr. Robert Nicholas "Nick" and May Bell (Hansen) Warren.

In her youth, Judy worked at her father's dental practice, attended First Congregational Church, participated in the Girls Athletic Association, and graduated from Proviso High School in Maywood. She often reminisced about the special confidant she found in her attentive maternal grandmother in those early formidable years.

After high school, Judy enrolled at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign and joined the Delta Gamma Sorority. It was at U of I where she fell for a hunky and doting football player, James "Jim" Brown of Mendota. They married on February 6th, 1960, which was only the beginning of an inseparable 61-year marriage.

Judy was the encouraging mother of three handsome sons. With her Cockapoo, "Charlie Brown" at her side, she created a warm and hospitable home for her husband and sons. Even as they left her nest, Judy remained her sons' biggest cheerleader.

Judy supported her husband's career as a football coach and athletic director as it took them to Melrose Park, back to the U of I U-C, and finally to Oak Park and River Forest High School. Judy's gregarious nature made her a shoo-in for working at the OPRFHS book store and taking tickets for sporting events. Judy spent every Fall rooting for both U of I and Chicago Bears football teams.

In 1991 Judy and Jim purchased a second home in Big Fork, MT where they spent half of every year for the next 30 years. They often hosted family and friends, taking their visitors hiking, fishing, rafting, snowshoeing, and skiing around Glacier National Park.

In 2002, Judy and Jim replaced their Oak Park home for a townhouse on Ginger Lane in Geneva, IL. Judy loved playing cards with her "Ginger Lane ladies" on Wednesdays as well as her friends, Judy and Roger Garrigues of Oak Park on Tuesdays. Judy was generous and neighborly, never returning an empty Tupperware without an additional treat and "Thank You" note.

She was an eternal optimist, sharing a lifetime of gracious and encouraging words and gestures. Judy lives on in the hearts and minds of all of those who were fortunate enough to know her.

Judy is survived by her devoted husband of 61 years, James Brown; her three adoring sons, Robert (Kylie), Peter (Susan), and Brett (Laura); her six wonderful grandchildren Peter Jacob (Sonia), David, Benjamin (Shaina), Alexander, Rachel, and Michelle; her adorable great-grandson, Austin; and her loving siblings Margaret "Peg" Schultz of Downer's Grove, Carl Warren of Ridgefield, Connecticut and Mary Boen of Geneva.

Funeral services will be held at the Merritt Funeral Home, Mendota on Wednesday, June 30 at 11 a.m. with Rev. Mary Bohall officiating. Visitation will begin at 10 a.m. Burial will be in Restland Cemetery, Mendota followed by a luncheon at the Mendota Civic Center.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to the fundraising efforts of childhood cancer survivor, Megan Bugg, who Judy admired as a source of strength, hope, and inspiration during her own battle with cancer ( https://cc-tdi.kindful.com/?campaign:1119113).

Online condolences may be left at www.merrittfh.com

Published by News Tribune on Jun. 28, 2021.
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Merritt Funeral Home
800 Monroe Street, Mendota, IL
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Merritt Funeral Home
800 Monroe Street, Mendota, IL
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10 Entries
Even as we mourn the loss of Judy's physical presence, we will always remember her as one of the most alive people we have known. She was full of the joy of living and always ready to extend her warmth to all whom she met. She and Jim were fantastic neighbors in Oak Park, and the friendship endured, even when Norm and Doris moved away. Our deepest sympathies are with you all. Kathy & Peter
Kathy & Peter Kapenga
July 5, 2021
Jim and family, I´m so sorry for your loss. Judy was one of the sweetest souls I have ever met. I will always remember her contagious smile and kind heart. My thoughts and prayers are with you. May your wonderful memories bring you peace and comfort. Love, Karen.
Karen Pratt
July 1, 2021
Our sympathy to the entire Brown family. We will always remember Judy's beautiful smile and positivity. Her love of life, her kindness. We enjoyed so many wonderful years as neighbors/friends.
Don & Sue Rago
June 29, 2021
Jim & family - Always remembered Judy's smile. Hope a smile comes to you when you think of all the great times you had with your mom/wife. She was a wonderful person. Will keep her in my prayer book. Mike Swierk
Mike Swierk
June 28, 2021
Our heartfelt condolence to the family of friends of Judy. May God give your family comfort and peace as you mourn her loss. Philippians 4:7 Her Love and Kindness will be greatly missed.
Ezeko & Rossy
June 27, 2021
Sandra Boen Johnson and family
June 27, 2021
What a bright star. We are all better for having had Judy in our lives. The world will forever be a little less bright without her presence. We will truly miss her.
John and Ann Barkley
June 27, 2021
My everlasting sympathies to all of you; Jim, Bob, Peter, Brett and family(s). Judy was such an an amazing light every time I saw her. She consistently brought so much joy and made a big impression on me as a young girl. I always looked forward to seeing the Brown family travel to Mendota for the family fish fry. Judy´s contagious smile and loving gestures were always guaranteed. Jim, I still feel sad that I didn´t get to visit you and Judy during my trip to Bigfork. And now, even sadder that I missed my opportunity. Thank you so much for posting the beautiful photo. That is the Judy I will miss. Peter, I am sorry to hear about your health challenges. May that strong-willed, Brown-blood get you through it all. You have my prayers. Please know that if not in person, my thoughts and prayers will be with you and your family 6/30th. Forever fondly And with Love, Mary Jane
Mary Jane Ehlers-Goslin
June 27, 2021
In Loving memory of Mom, Grandma Judy,
Loving and kind in all her ways, Upright and just to the end of her days; Sincere and true in her heart and mind, A beautiful memory she left behind. She had a nature you could not help loving. A heart that was purer than gold; And to those who knew her and loved her, Her memory will never grow old.

Peter, Susan, Peter Jacob, Sonia & David Brown
Peter Brown
June 26, 2021
Dearest Illinois Family, thank you so much for all of the kindness, love & support you shared with our family these last years as Mom was undergoing treatment and now during our time of grief. Please continue to remember us in your thoughts and prayers. As many of you know I am dealing with bladder cancer & my blood levels are too low to travel to Illinois for Mom's memorial service, but we will be with you in spirit. Remembering you all with love, Peter & Susan Brown & family.
Peter Brown
June 26, 2021
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