Raymond C. Brown

GWINN, MI – Raymond Charles Brown was born on September 22, 1950 to Marjorie and Jack Brown in Dearborn, Michigan. He died peacefully in the care of Trillium House on June 3, 2023 with his wife and family by his side.

His family moved to the UP in 1968 and Ray graduated from Gwinn High School in 1969. He enlisted in the US Army and immediately after graduation was off to basic training and served two tours in Vietnam in the 1st Airborne as a crew chief of sky crane helicopters. Upon his return to the US he worked at Ford’s truck assembly in Dearborn. He returned to the UP and attended welding school at NMU. He worked as a welder at Lakeside Iron Works and in 1978 was hired by LS&I Railroad as a welder. He retired from LS&I in 2010 spending his last years as their safety and health manager.

In 1978, he married Mary Beth “Betsy” Mussatto and they shared 45 wonderful years together.

Ray was a very gentle, kind and talented man. He would tackle any project, be it carpentry, electrical, plumbing, and mechanical, you name it and he could get the job done. He always told Betsy he could fix anything, but a broken heart. In 2013 Ray and Betsy built their retirement home on West Bass Lake in Gwinn. Ray’s talents are in evidence over all the lake property.

His greatest passions were flying and working on airplanes. He had obtained his private pilot, instrument and twin engine ratings. His favorite places were at the airport or at his hunting camp on the Escanaba River.

Ray is survived by his wife, Betsy of Gwinn; mother, Marjorie Brown of Marquette; sisters, Annette Brown of Marquette and Sharon (John) Shaw of Nashville, TN; sister-in-law, Carlene Brown of Kingsley, MI; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Barry and Emily Mussatto of Brighton, MI; Susan and Tony Kroncich of Marquette; 15 nieces and nephews and their families; and many very special friends (you know who you are and Ray loved you all). Ray was preceded in death by his father, Jack Brown; brother, Tom; sister, Donna; in-laws, Doris and Ed Mussatto and Joan and Jerry Erickson.

Honoring Ray’s request, no services will be held. A celebration of Ray’s life will take place at a later date.

Memorial contributions may be directed to Trillium House in Marquette or any cancer research association.

Canale-Gwinn Funeral Home and Cremation Services is assisting the family where memories may be shared at canalefuneral.com