2018-03-07

Former Lunenburg and Queens County sheriff passes after years of exemplary service

by Gayle Wilson

The recipient of a prestigious award for exemplary service, the former Sheriff of Lunenburg and Queens counties, Stephen (Steve) Brown, himself didn't hesitate to recognize the contributions of others in the law enforcement field.

Brown passed away February 20 at the Fisherman's Memorial Hospital, following a lengthy career within the Nova Scotia Department of Justice, and after a long battle with multiple myeloma, a type of blood cancer.

However the sense of duty, adventure and humour of a man who was passionate about the sea and his community lives on in the annals of our time.

Born in Quebec, and boasting university degrees in both oceanography and geology, Brown went on to work within Nova Scotia's Department of Justice, first as a deputy sheriff, then as sheriff of Lunenburg and Queens, and later also for Kings. He retired in June, 2016.

He was one of the first sheriffs in Nova Scotia to receive the Peace Officer Exemplary Service Medal, representing more than 30 years of dedication.

As sheriff, it was Brown's job to oversee court security, as well as the transportation of prisoners to and from institutions, the service of some civil and criminal documents and the execution of court orders.

His dedication to the justice system was apparent in other ways.

He would sometimes post his condolences on the online Office Down Memorial Page, dedicated to those killed in the line of duty.

Commenting on the passing of Reserve Officer Russell Hayden Simpson of the Bandon Police Department in Oregon in 2003, he wrote: "God Bless you Officer Simpson. You have made us all proud. Rest in Peace Brother."

And that same year to Moody County Deputy Sheriff William Paul Davis, he commented, "Rest in peace Brother. You have served your community with pride and dignity. My thoughts and prayers are with your family, friends and co-workers. You shall not be forgotten."

Off-duty, Brown enjoyed a range of interests and activities over the years, "from exploring his love of the ocean by sea kayaking, to his love of the land by touring near and far by motorcycle," according to his obituary.

Brown was a former member and chief of the Oakhill and District Fire Department, and a past president of the Maritime Motorcycle Touring Association.

"He was a woodworker, a handyman, and most of all a kind and caring person who was always ready to lend his talents to family, friends and friends he hadn't met before. He will be remembered for his big smile and quick sense of humour," the obituary continues.

In 2014, Brown let his lighter side shine through in an interview with the LighthouseNOW court reporter Keith Corcoran, as the subject in our newspaper's Ten things you didn't know about... feature.

Then aged 58 and a resident of Oakhill, Brown told Corcoran he owned his first motorcycle at the age of 15 and drove it through the streets of Quebec City.

He good-naturedly donned women's attire for a comical fire department fundraising fashion show.

And he "dressed as an elf multiple times for "lady's night" events during the holiday season. He's 6'4'," wrote Corcoran.

Progress Bulletin readers also learned Brown had the nickname "Tigger" during high school playing games. When Corcoran asked him how he got named after the Disney character, Brown replied with a laugh, 'Maybe I just bounced around the field.'"

Brown is survived by his immediate family of wife, Lisa; son, Alan; daughter, Kimberley; sister, Jessica; and brothers Pieter and Christopher.

A private family memorial service to celebrate Brown's life was to be held at Dana L. Sweeny Funeral Home in Lunenburg.

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