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I call uncle ‘Boo’ Brown my hero

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Some 70 years ago, my paternal grandmother passed away suddenly, leaving my grandfather to raise ten children.

My aunt Pauline was the eldest and took on the role of mother for a few years.

She then left Bermuda in search of a better life in America, and subsequently started her own family there.

The responsibility of raising the remaining siblings fell squarely on the shoulders of my aunt Millie.

Steadfast by her side was the man who had captured her eyes and heart, Charles “Boo” Brown. He ventured from the other side of the Pond in pursuit of the love of his life.

He hailed from Augustine's Hill, more commonly known as Smith's Hill.

Although gravity was on his side for the trek to Parsons Road, it worked against him as he made his way to our homestead, at the top of Pond Hill.

Yet, he would faithfully do that every day to see his Millie.

Somewhere along the way he came to the realisation that along with Millie came the entire Famous clan.

Her siblings were part and parcel and she simply would not abandon them for anyone — no matter how fancy they dressed or how gracefully they danced.

He quickly fell in line. Among his many duties was serving as my grandfather's chauffeur.

In 1948 he decided to monetise his love of driving, becoming one of the Bermuda's first government bus drivers.

To him, it was a passion rather than a job.

With that same pride, he would take his hard-earned cash to support the ever-growing clan on the top of Pond Hill. As a side note, the Famous clan numbered ten in 1940, today it has swelled to nearly 200.

For four decades Uncle Boo drove thousands around the island.

He was awarded a Queen's Certificate and Badge of Honour in recognition of his work.

In 1989, he finally retired after 41 years of service.

My grandfather passed away a few months shy of my birth, leaving Uncle Boo as the patriarchal figure in the Brown/Famous family for the last 50 years.

He constantly feeds us with Bermuda and back-of-town history.

I am filled with immense and uncontrollable pride whenever someone asks me, “Hey Chris, are you so-and-so's son?”

He is a man who exemplifies what manhood is truly about.

A man I have spent my entire life emulating and hoping to make proud.

Some call him “Pa”.

Some call him “Daddy”.

Most of Bermuda calls him “Boo Brown”.

I call him my hero.

A life well lived: Charles “Boo” Brown and Paula Course née Brown
Loving couple: Charles “Boo” and Millie Brown

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Published March 04, 2017 at 8:00 am (Updated March 04, 2017 at 12:35 am)

I call uncle ‘Boo’ Brown my hero

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