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In Memory Of Our Poets

Ansley Giddens "Todgie" Brown (1945-2011) - Class Of 1963

Ansley Giddens Brown, Jr., who lived like the sun in the hearts of family and friends, died at home in the adoring company of his loved ones on Nov. 24, 2011. He rejoiced in his 66 years on earth—almost as much as we did. A celebration of his life occurred at 1:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 30, at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church, where Ansley was a member. His family received friends after the ceremony. Ansley's mercurial presence in this world could have been called "Life of a Salesman." During a career of more than 40 years, he represented Johnson & Johnson, Revlon, and Davidson Titles, from which he retired in 2010 as national sales manager. Whether he was selling medical supplies, cosmetics, or library books, his real product was the irresistible tonic of himself. His charm and spectacular fashion sense radiated far beyond his professional life, endearing him to people from Birmingham to New York and New Orleans to Paris, his favorite city. Among his greatest pleasures was the year he lived on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, working for Revlon, devouring the city and developing an avid eye for art, especially the paintings of the German Expressionists. Born in Atlanta to Yvonne Crumley Brown and Dr. Ansley Giddens Brown Sr., he was reared in Montgomery, Ala.,where he graduated from Sidney Lanier High School, playing tennis and golf. He gained his baccalaureate degree from Troy State University. Growing up during the Bear Bryant era of powerhouse football at the University of Alabama, he became a lifelong crusader for the Crimson Tide. During Alabama games, he flew the Tide banner and shook the walls with booming cries of "Roll Tide!" He loved the rituals of the Episcopal Church, the elegance of his wife Joyce, the glow of a good table in a five-star restaurant, and the hum of a Cadillac on the open road headed toward bistros and stadium lights. A razor-tongued Yellow Dog Democrat, he raucously rooted for the Atlanta Braves and Detroit Tigers, relished movies and crossword puzzles, and drenched himself in the sun. He held season's tickets to the Greensboro Grasshoppers games from the opening of the new ballpark. Most importantly, he championed his family, often voicing his good fortune for being the husband of Joyce Groome Ferguson, the father of Martha Brown Seidel and Ansley Giddens Brown III, children from his marriage to Martha McCalman Gleaton, and step- father of Ashley Chase Ferguson and John Groome Ferguson. He was proud of all his children's accomplishments in business and the arts. He was especially devoted to his sister Gail Brown Holt, whose gift of a kidney added years to her brother's life. His survivors also include son in law David Seidel; daughters in law Allyson Ferguson and Jennifer Brown; grandchildren Martha McEwan Seidel, Ansley Giddens Brown IV, Abigail Grace Brown, Charlotte Ivey Ferguson, Charles Hale Ferguson, and Smith Groome Ferguson; nieces Amy Holt Turner and Kathryn Holt Fuller; and devoted friends Keith Cushman and Michael Gaspeny. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations in Ansley's name be sent to Hospice and Palliative Care of Greensboro (2500 Summit Avenue, Greensboro NC 27405) or Holy Trinity Episcopal Church (607 North Greene Street, Greensboro, NC 27401). Memories of Ansley Giddens Brown Jr. will grace our lives as long as we have breath to laugh and praise. Online Condolences may be made at lambethtrox lerfuneralhome.com