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Memorial:  12-3 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 18 at the Maple Valley Complex, Trufant

Barbara H. Brow, age 70, of Trufant, passed away Saturday, Oct. 4, 2008 at home under the loving care of her family and Hospice of Michigan after a nearly 5 year fight against ovarian cancer.

The daughter of Linnie & Clara (Adams) Stafford, she was born on Nov. 19, 1937 in Golconda, Illinois where she graduated from Polk County High School. On Sept. 15, 1956, in Jeffersonville, Indiana, she married Meryln Ray Brow.

Together, they owned and operated the Trufant Body Shop for 31 years, in addition to raising their family. Barb enjoyed traveling and snowmobiling, as well as golfing especially the Wednesday Ladies League at Brookside Golf Course in Gowen. For twenty-seven years she and Merlyn also enjoyed participating in the festivities of the Kentucky Derby in Louisville with friends.

She was preceded in death by an infant son, Leonard Dee Brow; her parents; two sisters, Irene Conley and Fay Earle; and two brothers, Elmer Dee Stafford and Lewis Stafford.

Surviving are her husband of 52 years, Merlyn Brow of Trufant; their children, Kathleen Hall & Dan of Stanton, Keith Brow of Trufant, Scott & Donna Brow of Baltimore, Maryland, Sam & Deb Brow of Saline, and William & Carmen Brow of Trufant; seven grandchildren, Phillip & Erica Ewing, Benjamin Ewing & Ashley Jeppesen, Alex Ewing & Emily Martin; Nate Brow, Brandon Brow, Madison Brow, and Sullivan Brow; and two great grandchildren, Trenton Ewing and Tia Ewing.

Also surviving are a sister, Shirley Barger of Shawneetown, Illinois; a brother, Morris Bud Stafford; siblings-in-law, Berniece Hitchcock of Edmore, Lorraine Lake of Acme, Melvin & Evon Brow of Flint, Eloise & Jerry Heniser of Six Lakes, Delbert & Cory Brow of Hemet, California, and Ronald & Esther Brow of Rockford; and many nieces and nephews.

The family invites relatives and friends to celebrate Barbs life in a time of food, fellowship, and memories on Saturday, Oct. 18, 2008 from 12-3 p.m. at the Maple Valley Complex (the former Trufant School).

Honoring Barbs wishes, cremation has taken place. Instead of flowers, the family suggests contributions in Barbs memory to either Hospice of Michigan (Big Rapids Office) or the American Cancer Society (for ovarian cancer).

To send a message of sympathy to the family, sign Barbs online guest book, or to share a favorite memory, please click the “Sign Guest Book” link above.


Let the family know you care by sharing this tribute.

1 Condolence

  1. Anonymous on October 4, 2008 at 12:00 am


    10/21/2008 –

    Delbert and Corry Brow

    Del and I are so glad that we came for the reunion. We knew we had to come and see her and you and the kids. She will be missed by us all. She was always so good to us, and was a sister to me.We loved it when you and her came to the lake for dinner, or just drop in, that is what we will miss very much. She is now in Gods house, and He loves her so much!!! You had 52 years of happiness, and that is something to be very greatful for……We love you Merle, and we love your children as well. You take care, and even though we are far away, we are here for you when you need us, always Del and Corry

    10/18/2008 –

    Alice Kelly

    The girls talked of how brave Barb was….she was in many ways like every time she dared to get into a canoe and paddle down the river with Merle at the stern. She did’nt swim but bravely put on a life jacket and a smile and down the river they went.
    I loved to here Merle say as he handed Barb his wallett, “here Barb fill’er up ! again she just smiled sweetly.
    Merle, you already know, so we do not need to say it, but call us if you need us. Even if it is to just watch TV.

    10/18/2008 –

    JIm Kelly

    Hey Merle sorry I missed the memorial was at “work”. You know I love you guys, Barb was a “peach”. You are a lucky man to have had her in your life, we were blessed to have her in ours. Til we see her again.
    Jim Kelly

    10/18/2008 –

    Pete & Barb Kain

    Bill,Carmen and Family- We are very sorry to hear about the death of your mom. Our thoughts are with you.

    10/17/2008 –

    Scott& Donna Brow & Family

    Barb will be missed greatly she was a wonderful lady with a big heart. You would not ever find a more kind person. Barb we will you in our hearts and in our prays. Love to all.

    10/17/2008 –


    Mom we love you very much. You were a very sweet and loving lady. You will always be in our hearts.
    You will be missed very much.I am glad I got to say goodbye to you before you passed away.

    10/16/2008 –

    June, Kathy, Ray and Jim

    Merle and Family You know what you and Barb (Sis) meant to us, she was such a beautiful person and friend. You will never know what you all meant to us and all the great times we had together, the derby, the cabin, and our homes. She has suffered so long now she resting in peace. Now you know she is now soaring with all the beautiful butterflies. With deepest sympathy. Merle we are all here for you. Kathy, June, Ray, and Jim

    10/16/2008 –

    Deb (Owen) Cortez

    Merl & family, My deepest sympathy on your loss. I had a nice visit with Barb at my moms house about a year ago. You and Barb have been wonderful, supportive friends to my Mom and I thank you. Again I am so sorry.

    10/14/2008 –

    Chuck and Lisa (Mallion) Hook

    Dear Merle and Family,
    Our thoughts and prayers have been with all of you for a very long time.
    This world lost a wonderful, loving, caring woman when the Lord called Barb home. She is at peace now, no longer fighting such a painful battle. We will all miss her, as she touched so many lives. As difficult as this is, take comfort in knowing that those that loved Barb, also love you.
    We will continue to pray for each of you.
    Love, Chuck and Lisa

    10/14/2008 –

    Lori Bergers

    I will miss Aunt Barb’s kind and loving heart. My thoughts and prayers are with you Uncle Merle, Kathy, Keith, Scott, Sam and Bill.
    My Love to you, Lori
    I believe she is with my Ricky, smiling once again.

    10/12/2008 –

    Teri Tinney

    Dear Merle and family. I am so sorry to hear of the lost of Barb. My prayer and thoughts are with you all. I know you and Barb meant so much to my parents Frenchy and Arlene Fillion. I remember all the good times my parents talked about both of you. I know all the people in Trufant will be there for you as they were for me and my family when we lost my parents. Remember your friends in these times and they will be there to comfort you and your family.

    10/12/2008 –

    Todd and Linda Earle

    Uncle Meryl you are in our thoughts and prayers. Call us anytime. Love , Todd and Linda

    10/11/2008 –

    Clara Gordon

    aunt Barb was the greatest aunt on earth to us.Uncle Merle and family you have our deepest sympathy.We’ll love her forever. Claude&Clara Gordon Laura Braden & Family

    10/06/2008 –

    Greg and Gail Thebo and Girls

    Barb~~~What an extraordinary, one of a kind, woman. Barb was always so pleasant to be around and that smile would just melt your heart and make you feel so welcomed. She had a heart of gold. We are so glad that we got to know Barb and we will always remember her by her smile. Our prayers and thoughts go out to Merle and the Brow Faimily.
    We will miss you Barb, but we know that you are in a wonderful place.
    Greg, Gail, Kristie and Kaitlyn Thebo

    10/06/2008 –

    Linda Post

    Merl, My thoughts, prayers and deepest sympathy to you and your children. Her kind gentle ways and wonderful smile will be missed by all us from Wednesday Supper Club!

    10/06/2008 –

    Jerry & Michelle Smith

    Merle & Family,
    Just to say, you are in our thoughts & prayers. Barb is at peace now….she was one of the nicest and strongest person we have ever met. If there is anything we can do Merle…..please call.
    Jerry & Michelle

    10/06/2008 –

    Kathy Hall

    My Mom fought a very strong and courageous battle with ovarian cancer. She never complained about how she felt. She lived every day since she got sick to the fullest. She had a way of making everyone in her life know they were loved. She felt very strongly in educating other women in the prevention of this cancer. So please everyone she loved get regular checkups trust your body, fight with a doctor to get the tests you need. Let’s not let another beautiful women die from this terrible cancer.. I will miss her always,and her unjudgemental love…

    10/06/2008 –

    Emily Martin

    I’m really going to miss Grandma Brow. She was a wonderful wife, mother and grandma. My thoughts go out to the family. I love you guys very much.

    Jack and Judy Carpenter

    Dear Merle and Family, am so sorry about Barb, but she has suffered so long and has put on such a good front, she was a wonderful and caring person, and is now free of pain. If you or your family need anything, please call. Love Chick and Judy

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