In Memory of Carl Nordyke Brownsberger

The main arc of my father’s life was simple.  He admired his parents and followed in their footsteps.  He became a doctor so he could care for people.  He was devoted to my mother and our family.  He died at home in his sleep.

Carl Brownsberger’s grandfather was an early leader in the Seventh Day Adventist faith, which places a focus on health.  Carl’s parents and their siblings all became medical doctors. 

He was born in India where his parents were medical missionaries.  Neither he nor his father could fend off malaria and after a few years, the young family returned to Glendale, California to join a vibrant community of Adventists. 

He chafed against the lifestyle restrictions of strict Adventism, especially the Saturday sabbath which separated him from his classmates and made it hard to date girls or participate in sports.   

Carl’s father spent the war years as a surgeon in San Francisco, patching up soldiers injured on the Pacific front.  By the time his father returned to Glendale, Carl was a late teenager expecting to live as he wanted to live.  Father and son argued about religion. 

When he went to college, Carl discovered positivist philosophy and found justification for abandonment of his Adventist upbringing.  His allegiance to his parents remained so deep that until late in life he often felt the need to re-explain his choice. 

He followed his parents to medical school.  He never gave a thought to any other path.   

He was an old-school physician:  He saw patients as people, not as charts.  When my sister and I were little, he was our family doctor and he carefully attended to our smallest ailments.  I can still feel his gentle touch and hear his kindly diagnostic patter. 

As a psychiatrist, he was always available to his patients.  He gave them our home number and even took their calls during dinner.  We often tried to eat quietly at the kitchen table while he held the wall phone tight to his ear. Listening to him listen to his patients, I learned from his caring and his careful attention to how his patients were feeling.   

As he rebelled against the faith of his parents, he was also willing to challenge medical dogma.  In a field of medicine in which there were multiple rigid schools of thought, he was a pragmatist:  He always wanted to do whatever worked and he partnered with each patient to figure out what would help.   

Through the years, many strangers have been willing to tell me how much they appreciated the kindness and care that my father gave them. 

He had little patience for bureaucracy.  As health care insurers tightened pre-authorization rules, he found himself spending too much time on the phone explaining to unsympathetic bureaucrats his care plans for patients.  He retired at 65 because he felt medicine was changing in ways he didn’t like. 

But he never stopped caring for people.  In his retirement, he volunteered for a hospice and became their medical director.  Well into his 80s, he would leave the house with medical bag to care for aging friends. 

He had a sweet retirement life with my mother.  In a tongue-in-cheek Christmas letter, he bragged to friends that “Susan and I have found a new way to make love – we read to each other.” 

When my mother became ill with pancreatic cancer, he rallied for one final care mission.  Her death in February shattered him, but he pulled himself together to do all that needed to be done. 

Recently, he seemed to be rediscovering joy in the little things of life.  When he died in his sleep earlier this week, my sense was not so much that he died of a broken heart, but that he had no one else left to take care of. 

Among his many wise sayings was this: “There is a big difference between thinking things and doing things.”  While his inquiring mind ranged wide and he doubted all dogma, in his deeds he was a very religious man. 

I’ve read through everyone’s moving and supportive comments below. I just want to say how much I appreciate them all — the kindness matters. June 23, 2021.

Published by Will Brownsberger

Will Brownsberger is State Senator from the Second Suffolk and Middlesex District.

203 replies on “In Memory of Carl Nordyke Brownsberger”

  1. My deepest condolences on your Dad’s passing. Thanks for writing about the legacy he left.

  2. Will, my condolences to you and your family. I am not sure that I ever met your father, but now I wish I had.

  3. Thank you for sharing your wonderful love and experiences with your Father! So sorry he had to leave this earth but gladdened to know you had so many years with him. May we all be so blessed to not only live such a wonderful life but to also depart peacefully in our own home.

  4. What a beautiful tribute to your father who must have been an extraordinary man. May his memory be a blessing and may you have strength.

  5. My sympathy and prayers will. This has been a tough year for you and your family. Both your parents were compassionate and admirable.

  6. Beautiful tribute. So sorry for your loss. I wish we all could have known him—he sounds like a kind, caring, compassionate soul who will be greatly missed.

  7. What a remarkable man…and what a moving tribute this remembrance is. You have been blessed with wonderful parents, Will, and you are undoubtedly their finest legacy.
    With sincere condolences for your loss

  8. This is a wonderful tribute, Will. My thoughts are with you and your family.

  9. Sorry Carl left us, but you can carry on in his image in “doing things”. Thanks fro sharing these personal thoughts. Ottavio

  10. Our sympathies to you and your family. That was a great story about your father. Thanks for sharing. JB

  11. A life well lived; together with a son & children and grandchildren caring on his legacy. Kindness, caring and thoughtful reflective life- with a healthy dose of independent action. Thank you for sharing. May his Memory be eternal.

  12. My sincere condolences, Senator Brownsberger, on the loss of your beloved father. May your memories afford you some peace and comfort as you and your family mourn your loss.

  13. Condolences. What a good man. And I share his worry about the medical profession when ER nurses have to stay un-paid hours to do the paperwork they had no time for during workhours.

  14. Beautifully said William, you follow in his footsteps in so many ways. Thoughts to you and your family.

  15. A lovely tribute to someone who clearly was a wise, caring man. Thank you, Will, for sharing this.

  16. Will, I’m sorry to hear of the passing of your father so soon after your mother. My sympathy to you and your family for your loss. Your father’s influence lives on in how you care so deeply for others as well. May he always be with you in spirit.

  17. Will–condolences. I am so sorry for the loss of your father and, earlier, of your mother. Your wonderful remembrances paint a vivid and wonderful picture of your parents and say a lot about how you became the wonderful man and legislator you are. My heart is with you.
    Best, Nikki

    1. Dear Mr. Brownsberger,
      What Nikki wrote is exactly what I wanted to say.
      Thank you for sharing and thank you for all you do for us.

  18. Your father left deep foot prints. You follow them so well while leaving your own.

  19. Oh, Will–this must be a hard year indeed for you. Our deepest condolences! Your reflections on both your mother and father–wonderful people!–go far to shed light on how you became the admirable public servant we are so grateful for.

  20. Dear Senator Brownsberger- You’re message is enormously moving and meaningful. Your father sounds like a fascinating, good man- a mensch. May his name be a blessing.

  21. My condolences to you and your family, Will. To lose both parents in a year is a lot, and I hope that their memory is a blessing to you and yours.

  22. I am so sorry for the loss of your father, Will, especially coming so close after your mother’s passing in February. You dad sounded like an
    extraordinary man and an inspiration to everyone whose life he touched. This has been a very rough year for your family. I send prayers and wishes for peace for all of you.

  23. Will, very sorry for your loss. You’ve written a wonderful remembrance. I have such fond memories of Carl. I loved reading about his favorite saying. I hope you’ll share more of his sayings in the future.

  24. What a beautiful tribute to a wonderful man.
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  25. I saw in the neighborhood walking slowly with your father in the last few months and I knew of your mother’s passing. It was touching to see you both and I could tell there was great love and respect. They must have been so proud of you. It seems a gift, from the outside, that you were able to be close to each other. Thank you for the real and moving tribute. – Sara Smith, Slade St.

  26. What a beautiful remembrance. In your unstinting public service, you reflect the generous spirit of both of your parents. Condolences to your entire family.

  27. Will,
    Both your parents were lovely, caring, exceptional human beings, and it was always a joy to see them. You are carrying the torch forward, and as a constituent and friend, I salute you and your family and the values you bring to our community. Thank you for sharing your father’s life history with us.

  28. Loss of a parent at any age is always a time of sorrow. My deepest condolences to you Will. I am reminded of advice I received from a doctor in response to my question about how to ensure a long, healthy life for myself. The response: “Pick your parents, and grandparents wisely.” It seems you did that, Will.

  29. It is very hard to lose a parent. Sending sympathy for your loss. And, thank you for sharing these remembrances of your father. He is an inspiration.

  30. If it is sad to hear that a person such as your father has left us, it is so heartening to hear that such a person has been among us. Thank you for sharing this appreciation; my condolences to you and your family.

  31. Wow. How lucky you were to have this man as your father. This of course just makes your loss harder. My thoughts are with you and your family. Hang in there.

  32. So sorry to hear about your father’s passing. Wishing your family all the best.

  33. I met your parents only once, and I sensed they were good people. Your description of your father’s history explains a lot about you, too; now I know why you often march to a different drummer. It must be hard on your family to lose both your parents in such quick succession, so I wish you all well.

  34. I’m so sorry for your loss. He seemed like a wonderful man and clearly will be remembered as such. I’m sure you’re making him very proud.

    1. Yours sounds like the family that keeps on giving. Very sorry for the passing of your dear mom earlier, and now your dad. They raised an generous son. Sincere condolences.

  35. Thanks Will, for a beautiful tribute to your dad..He meant a lot to you, but so many others.. His life was such a gift!


  36. Will: I’m so sorry to hear about your loss, so soon after losing your mother. But what a beautiful – and inspiring – tribute that was. Thoughts and actions. Lots to think about. Thanks for sharing. What a man!

  37. So sorry to hear of your lose. My deepest sympathy to you and your family. Your father sounds like a wonderful man.


  38. “.. he was also willing to challenge medical dogma. In a field of medicine in which there were multiple rigid schools of thought, he was a pragmatist..”. That makes sense. In helping my ‘David & Goliath’ coalition in a matter which represents a disenfranchised many, I’m grateful for the instilled values. My condolences.

  39. Ohhh, what sad news, and on the heels of your mother’s passing. Sending condolences, and thank you for describing your wonderful parents. So sorry for your losses.

  40. Lovely tribute to your father. My condolences to you and your family. So hard to lose both parents in the same year. A great loss – both your parents appear to have been wonderful. How fortunate you are to have had them. Sorry they have moved on to their heavenly reward.

  41. I am sorry for your loss but from your words it seems your father’s spirit will live on and be bright. You were lucky that he lived so long into yours and others lives. He sounds like a truly wonderful man who was able to live the life that he envisioned. It is so rare these days to hear a story of a person who did so much good in spite all the barriers that life can present. I wish you well in your time of mourning.

  42. Thank you for sharing your father’s life story with us. Sharing the warmth of your love for him and the sadness of his death is a gift to all of us. May his memory be a blessing.

  43. Dear Will, I’m so sorry that your father died. Thank you for sharing some of your warm thoughts about his well lived life. The people we love in on in our hearts. I am sure he will live on and on in many, many hearts including yours. Peace, Mary

  44. Will, I’m so sorry for you loss and coming so soon after your Mom. What a wonderful tribute to your Dad. Your parents were wonderful people who clearly did a great job raising their children.

  45. Hi Will, thank you for sharing so fondly about your father. The story brought tears to my eyes. He sounds like a lovely man. I would say that regarding you, the apple didn’t fall far from the tree. Holding you and your family in my heart. peace, John Bell

  46. What a beautiful and inspiring tribute. I see where your kind and generous heart comes from. Sending my condolences and prayers to you and your family .

  47. Will, thank you for sharing. You are a large part of his legacy. May your memories of your father bring you sustenance and joy as you carry out your life of service.

  48. Will, this piece brought tears to my eyes. Your father was so kind and, I know, devoted to your mother. I will miss him walking by our house and chatting and he never gave up on staying mobile and strong. Thank you for this. My heart goes out to you, Carolyn and your family.

  49. I am so sorry for your loss, Will. Your father obviously set a wonderful example for so many to aspire to, and it’s clear the positive influence he had on you and others in his orbit. His life was one well lived.

  50. An elegant account of a life lived with grace, dignity and service. Our condolences to you, Will.

  51. Lucky you for having him as your dad, and lucky for us that you gave us a chance to know him.

  52. I’m honored that you’ve shared these reflections with us, Will. I’m also very sorry for the loss of both of your parents, and in such a short time period! You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers. The reflection on your father is really beautiful; I can see where you got the thoughtfulness and accessibility that you so consistently bring to your work in the State Senate and extend to your constituents! Wishing you grace and peace in this time of orienting to a season of life without your parents!

  53. What a perfectly beautiful tribute to your father. You make me feel like I knew him. I only met him, and your mother, once – at your wedding. I remember particularly what beautiful dancers they were. It was just striking – how gorgeous they were together. That image of elegance, grace and total commitment to each other is one I still recall frequently. Maybe they were meant to leave this life together. I send my deepest sympathies.

  54. Will, I’m very sorry for your loss. You wrote a beautiful tribute to your dad – and now I know where your patience and accessibility to your constituents come from. Losing a parent is always painful, but I hope you’re soothed by knowing that you’re enormously fortunate to have grown up with a father like that. Both of your parents lives epitomize how lives should be lived – and not only because of their own and their parents choices, but also because the country in which they lived made it possible. I so hope we can keep that country, together with the strong family values that were at the root of its success.

  55. Sorry for the loss of your father and so soon after your mother passed. You and your family are in our prayers.

  56. So sorry to hear of your father’s passing, Will. I remember your Dad and his graciousness serving us poll workers with Dunkin’ Donut coffee and pastries when you were running for the Select Board. He said, ‘If you can stand out here for hours you at least deserve a cup of coffee.’ He was truly humble and kind – our Town has lost a gentle soul.

  57. So sorry to hear this sad news. My thoughts are with you all at this sad time.

  58. Such a good soul. Your father truly led a remarkable life in caring for so many and making his own path in the world. Thanks so much for sharing.

  59. You describe a life well lived. May your father’s memory be a blessing and may you continue on the path of doing as well as thinking!

  60. A lovely remembrance, Will. Thank you for sharing. My deepest condolences to you and to your family. May you all be safe and protected, peaceful and happy.

  61. Sorry for your loss. Your father was clearly an example of a life purposefully lived. We are fortunate to have people like him in this world.

  62. Will, I sorry to hear about you father and also about the loss of your mother. My memories off driving down Bay state rd when caring for my mother and see your mother and dad out in the garden. If they saw me driving by I always got a wave sometimes I would stop and chat.
    Losing a parent is so difficult but knowing they are together holding hand and watching over you and your growing family is love!
    You are in my thoughts,
    Maria Murphy

  63. Such wonderful memories! I know how heartbreaking the death of a loved one is. My heart goes out to you, keep those memories close.

  64. Please accept my heartfelt condolences. Your father was an extraordinary man who you clearly admired and loved. May his memory be for a blessing.

  65. My condolences, Will. Clearly you inherited his wonderful sense of service and the ability to listen to others. He sounds like a wonderful man, indeed.

  66. Will, this is such a loving and powerful tribute. It was my great honor to have met your father as he spoke to my class at BC. I agree with others that you are doing a great job of carrying on the legacy of great parents.

  67. A beautiful tribute to a beautiful man. Thank you for sharing this, Will. The last paragraphs reminded me of my own father who collapsed while raking leaves and never revived, six months after my mother died of breast cancer. He had retired at the pinnacle of his career to care for her at home. That was in 1989, and they were both in their early sixties.

  68. Will, what a lovely tribute to your father. I remember meeting him in
    Watertown at a Citizens for the Environment dinner. We talked about his profession, and he expressed his disgust at “clinic care” — which is what we all get now, if we’re lucky. Your parents were both wonderful people. My condolences to you and your family.

  69. Sorry for your loss. Your reflection on his life allows us to get a sense of what an inspirational man he was for you.

  70. My deepest sympathy and condolences on your Father Carl’s passing. Thank you for sharing his life background and life story. RIP Carl.

  71. Thank you, Will, and so sorry for your loss of a great dad. He must have been incredibly proud of you! Life as an orphan is different–you will see.

    Best wishes,

  72. SO sorry to hear of the loss of your father. He must have been so proud of your success, your dear family, and the way you have chosen a life that helps people in so many ways, as he did through medicine . You were blessed with great parents!

  73. Will – thank you so much for sharing your personal tribute to your father and for your life of service. Reading these reflections makes me appreciate even more, your integrity, compassion, talent, intelligence and tireless commitment to truth and justice – in action – now that you have revealed the enormous inspiration of your father. I do believe he is now united with Susan in Heaven! With empathy – Pat Dinneen

  74. May his soul rest in peace. How lucky to have parent(s) who led by example. The torch is passed on to you.

  75. Will, your Dad lived his life caring for others. Being like your Dad caring for others I am sure you gave him great joy and pride.

  76. Will, your comments about your Dad echo your Dad’s straightforward simplicity and grace. He and your Mother stood out in a crowd for all the best reasons. They emanated kindness, humility and nobility. Your father also had a spark of humor.
    I am so sorry for your loss of your parents. They gave you much and you carry them forward. Best to you, Carolyn and your family. Monica

  77. Well done Senator…your love for your Dad shines through…Your family has been blessed…

  78. Will,
    Heartfelt condolences to you and your family losing both parents within months of each other. Hope all your wonderful memories bring you comfort.

  79. Will, I remember that your mother died earlier this year, and am sorry that you have had this second loss. Your tribute to your father was so good. What a great father. My sympathy, John

  80. Dear Will, it’s always hard to lose a parent, to lose both in proximity, is especially hard. Thank you for sharing a piece of a lovely human with us. He and you Mom raised a great son.
    Marilyn & Fred Pritikin

  81. Condolences on your loss. Sounds like caring for others and taking care of your community is a family trait. Our thoughts are with you and your family.

    Paul and Susan

  82. Will, I have such fond memories of both your parents. Thanks for sharing this touching reflection on your dad’s life. Helen

  83. Senator, Your tribute to your father was moving and conveyed that he will be forever in your heart as a guiding hand as you continue your life’s journey.

  84. Dear Senator Brownsberger,
    What a source of strength and guidance your parents have given you. It is tough to have lost both your parents in the same year. Thank you for sharing such a beautiful tribute to an exceptional man. Your parents must be proud that you also care so deeply for others.

  85. My condolences on your loss. Thank you for the remembrances of your father’s exceptional life. The few times I interacted with him he seemed a kind and wonderful man.

  86. Thank you for writing this remembrance, Will. You had marvelous parents — but now such a deep loss. Our sympathy to you and your dear family.

  87. Will, Thank you for sharing your words about your father, Losing one parent is hard. Losing both so close to one another must be even more so. My thoughts are with you and your family at this difficult time.

  88. Will, thanks for sharing, first your mother, and now your dad. You have so much positive from them, and in you. Their gift.
    Frank Hartmann

  89. So sorry. What a lovely tribute to your father. I can see where you got some of your kindness.

  90. Will, my sincere condolences on your father’s passing. He sounds like a most remarkable, caring individual who will be missed not only by you and other members of your family, but also by all the people he helped during his life’s work as a physician.

  91. Great memories Will! Condolences, thinking good thoughts for you and your family.

  92. Will,
    A personal, thoughtful tribute to a very special man. He left us when he was ready.
    Warmest regards to you and your family.
    Phyl & Paul

  93. Dear Will,
    So sad to lose both parents in 4 months. The exact same thing happened to me, even in the same order. I thought your mother was extraordinary but it seems you benefited from two very special parents. My condolences on your loss.

  94. What a beautiful tribute to a good and kind man. He must have been very proud of you.

  95. What a great role model! This helps to explain your dedication to public service.

  96. Dear Senator ,
    What a beautiful tribute to your father and what an incredible man. So happy to hear – as someone in the mental health field – as a practicing psychiatrist how much he loved his patients – how he personally cared for them and for all – and how he disliked the current status – charts instead of people . He too was so caring for your mother – such a model for others as we all age.
    Thank you so much for sharing with us – you were so blessed to have such parents and know too they never really die but stay with us.
    May you be blessed at this time knowing they are together watching over you and your family.
    And cherish all those happy memories.

  97. That’s a lovely tribute Will. Your sharing of such personal details makes your father and indeed his parents known to even those who never met them. Sorry for you loss and so soon after your mother must be trying. Blessings you your extended family.

  98. Will,
    I am saddened you have lost your Dad not all that long since you lost your Mom. Both were remarkable people who bettered the lives of all they connected with. Just like you do. Sincere condolences. You have written a beautiful tribute to him.
    Susan & Paul Griffin

  99. So sorry to hear of your loss Will. It’s certainly been a hard year, but it sounds like you were blessed with extraordinary parents and to have them both for a very long time. I’m sure they felt blessed to see how their son turned out.

  100. My deepest sympathy to you and your family. You have had a difficult year losing both parents. Be kind to yourself . It takes time to heal. You have written a beautiful tribute remembering your father, as you did for your mom as well. May the good Lord bless their souls.
    Carry on in their memory and continue the excellent work you do serving your constituents. God bless.
    Za Sarkisian

  101. Dear Will, What a beautiful tribute to your father. I’m so sorry for your two losses this year, but you are clearly the beneficiary of two wonderful parents whose active minds, hearts, and deeds will live in you and your family for years to come. But still a very hard loss. Take care.

  102. I am so sorry that you lost both parents within the last six months. Both were wonderful individuals, and I’m sure their loss weighs heavy on your heart. I hope all those beautiful memories bring you some solace. Again, my deepest sympathies to you and your family.

  103. I am so sorry for your loss. What a beautiful tribute to a wonderful life, well lived.

  104. Dear Will,
    I’m so sorry for your loss. Your father was a wonderful man and, I’m sure, an inspiration.

  105. Caring runs in the family

    Your service to others parallels your Dad’s!!!

  106. After reading about your father and his road in life , it is no wonder how you have become a servant of the people.

  107. Oh my gosh Will! I am so sad. I love your Dad and he was a terrific cheerleader who assured me that in the end, good would prevail. He was kind, thoughtful, and made this world a better place. I always said he passed on tremendous DNA to you. And he will remain in you and your children and what has been taught will continue to make this world better. Sending you my strength as I can’t imagine the pain, and know how much I care about you and your family and how grateful I am to know such tremendous people.

  108. Will,
    It must have been wonderful to share a home with such loving parents. Thank you for publishing your beautiful tribute. My sincere condolences on your double loss this year.

  109. So sorry to hear of the loss of your extraordinary father, Will. Your descriptions of him are lovely. It must be especially hard to lose both of your parents in such a short time after such a challenging year.

  110. Dear Will,
    One of the things I love about this account is your appreciation of your father’s moral/intellectual trajectory. The very fact that you are aware of it and understand is a great tribute to your father, to you, and to your relationship.
    All best wishes,

  111. Will,
    It must have been heartwarming to share a home with such wonderful parents. Thank you for sharing this tribute to your father. My sincere condolences on this sudden loss.

  112. I’m so sorry for your loss of your dad and so recently your mom. Thank you for sharing your tribute to him.

  113. I’m sorry for your loss. What a beautiful tribute to a wonderful man. You write from the heart and so eloquently. Thank you for sharing your family with us.

  114. Thank you, Will, for sharing these loving memories of your father. He made a difference. I am sorry for your loss. May his memory be a blessing.

  115. So sorry for your losses this year. It sounds like the world was lucky to have them both.

  116. Will, I am so sorry for your loss! What a
    wonderful tribute to learn about your kind,
    generous, & talented father. The giving gene was certainly passed on to you! Now your parents are watching over you together again. Thinking of you & your family.

  117. William, I am so very sorry. My thoughts, prayers and love are with you and your family ???

  118. What a moving tribute. I am sorry for your loss. You are a credit to their memories.

  119. I am sorry for the loss of both tour parents in such a short time. This was a lovely tribute.

  120. Will,
    The first and only time I met your parents was at a Brighton restaurant. You were announcing your intent to run for public office. It was a pleasure to talk to both of them. Again my condolences to you and your family on the loss of your mother in February of this year and now your dad in June of the same year. 66+ years together and now they are together again.

  121. Dear Will and the Brownsberger family, I remain truly saddened that you lost two beautiful souls and sources of strength, inspiration, and support in less than 6 months apart. Thank you for your prose about the essence of your father’s goodness and his sense of caring for others. Clearly, they both felt their work was done having created such a beautiful and accomplished family and fond remembrances.

  122. Sincere condolences. You had a great role model and do so much to make this a better world. Thank you for sharing your memories.

  123. Dear Will
    You were most fortunate to have such wonderful parents.
    Your father was a remarkable and memorable man.
    My condolences.

  124. As they say, “ The apple does not fall far from the tree.” You are a reflection of that caring man. Saddens me to hear if your loss. Wish all of my many, past students had had the benefit of such a great father.

  125. Dear Will and family,

    What a beautiful tribute. Your father, like your mother, was a wonderful human being. Holding you all in my heart at this difficult time and wishing you much love, peace, and comfort.

    Anne Landry

  126. Dear Will,

    My deepest sympathy to you. This is a lot of loss in a short period of time. I cannot imagine
    how difficult it all must be.
    Sending my best,
    Tom Jones

  127. Will,
    Please know that I think of you and your family during this difficult time and thank you for sharing a bit of your dad’s commitment to family, friends and community.

  128. We carry our parents with us forever, Will. I know you will keep your father close to your heart.

  129. Thanks for much for sharing this, Sen. Brownsberger. So sorry for the loss of both your parents this year.


  130. Will, my sincere condolences. Thank you for sharing the story about your dad. A loving tribute to a special person. He did so much good, and you carry on the tradition.

  131. Ditto friend Nikki’s comments and would love to see a photo of you & your dad. Sincere condolences.

  132. Will, that is a remarkable tribute to your father, but also to your mother for supporting him in his life’s work. Never had the knowing of a father experience, but I still can feel the loss when someone expresses their sorrow and grief.

  133. Senator Brownsberger:
    Dear Senator. It is so difficult, when the time for our parents to leave us has come. To discover that you’ve lost both, of them, within a year of each other, saddens me. May they rest in Peace, together again for eternity. You have shared wonderful memories of your Father, and have given him such a Tribute.
    May these memories comfort you and the family for years to come. Again, Thank you for sharing.
    Elaine Grey
    Watertown, MA

  134. Will, I am so sorry for your loss. Your father sounds like a uniquely special person. In time the heartbreak of loss will fade and you will be left with the wonderful memories of your father and the cherished love you both shared.

  135. Dear Will,
    Thank you for this gorgeous and moving description of your father and his life. You were lucky indeed to have such a father. My sincerest condolences.
    Anne Curtis

  136. Thank you for sharing your stories of both your Mom and Dad.
    It’s a heart-warming way to encourage us to step back, remember what is important in this world.

    Also, gratifying to see all the support from your constituents.
    You represent a community of caring people; this says a lot about you.
    My best to you, especially now.

  137. Will, It is hard to lose both parents so close together. Thanks for sharing this beautiful tribute. I loved reading about his choices in life.

  138. Beautiful. Made me cry for your loss. You are so lucky to have had such inspirational parents. That’s why you are such a caring, thoughtful man devoted to service. Thank you for this.

  139. Thank you for sharing your biography of your Dad. His is an uplifting story. Wishing you many grace-filled moments of remembering your parents.

  140. Dear Will,
    I am so sorry for your most difficult losses this year. From a prayer book I use: “When the memories of our dear departed spur us on to nobler aspiration, in our hearts they live enshrined forever.” You are the embodiment of their hopes and prayers, and we are all the better for it. God Bless You.

  141. This was so touching. You follow in his footsteps in many ways. We are lucky to have you rallying for us.

  142. Our condolences on the loss of your father and your mother in such a short period of time. Your
    remembrances of each of them show a deep respect and love for them and also reveal the source, at least in part, of your integrity and desire to make a positive impact on the world.

  143. Senator,
    My heart goes out to you. We have all had a tough year but you have had an exceptionally difficult one. Your father sounded like a fantastic man. We need more of his type, now more than ever. Your love for him is very apparent. Thank you for sharing this with us.

  144. So sorry to hear of your loss. Reading your tributes to your parents makes clear what great people they were, what wonderful, meaningful lives they lived and made for themselves and their children. I am grateful for all you do for us and have been impressed by your service, thoughtfulness about the issues and caring for your constituents. I am sure your parents are proud of the son you have become as a legacy to their hard work, intelligence and heart.

  145. Will, this is a very moving and loving tribute, as was your earlier one for your mother. Your parents were some of the most kindly and gracious people I have ever known. They will be missed.

  146. Senator,

    I’m sorry for your loss of your father. There’s no substitute for the care of a parent. I miss my parents and often think of them, what they did for me. My late father was a physician in the days when house calls were made. (Alas!) Every room in the house was wired with a landline phone to catch the phone calls. Always on call. Thank you for sharing your story. Your father would be happy you also help people.
    I’m proud of a life well-spent in my father’s case. I hope you can take some comfort in your father’s dedication. Thank you for what you do for us.

  147. Thank you for sharing some of your father’s story with us. The world is a better place because of what he did and who he was. Sincere condolences on your loss…

  148. Dear Will,
    Your grace and eloquence at this moment of extreme loss and pain inspire me so much. Thank you for showing us the way.

    When I first read your tribute after your Father’s passing last week, it felt like so much raw pain after the very recent loss of your Mother in February that I could not even manage to formulate written condolences as much as I thought often of you. The soul rebels at so much loss all in the context of a pandemic that creates so much systemic stress.

    Now today reading the full obituary in our local paper provides an opportunity to celebrate the beautiful spirit of your Father, someone who contributed so much to our world. His extraordinary spirit lives on in you as does the elegant, refined spirit of your Mother, Susan.

    We thank the Brownsberger family for elevating our spirits by inspiration and reminding us of the most important message of all, that we are all connected.

    May you find peace and solace in memories of your extraordinary parents, and hope in the prospects of your three daughters’ new families whose energies and values bring new life, new hope.

    Warm wishes,
    Maryalice Sloan-Howitt & Arn Howitt

  149. It is a marvellous thing to be blessed with caring, capable parents and I give thanks for having had mine every day. You, too, were obviously blessed and their legacy lives on through you.

  150. Dear Senator Brownsberger,
    My belated condolences on the loss of first your mother and then your father. Thank you for illuminating their humanity and sharing their journeys with us through your tributes. The world is a better place for their having passed through, and their nurturing love lives on in the generations that follow. May your memories of them bring you peace and comfort.

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