Gary M. Brown, 57, of Edinboro, formerly of Pittsburgh, died Monday, June 29, 2020 at home. He was born in Pittsburgh on July 11, 1962, and was the son of Brenda and George Tunder and the late David Brown.
Gary graduated from Milton S. Hershey School. In 1981, he entered the military, serving as a law enforcement specialist. His ribbons include the Air Force Training Ribbon, and the Air Force Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon.
While still in the military, Gary became interested in herpetology (the study of reptiles and amphibians), which became his lifelong passion. During his time in California, he worked at a private zoo and wildlife preserve, working with many different animals, including hawks, wolves, and a jaguar to name a few. Gary shared his love of animals by visiting local classrooms as part of their zoo outreach program. In addition, he became skilled at venom extraction for use in creating anti-venoms for snake bite victims. As a result of his expertise with venomous snakes, he was often called upon to assist local sheriff’s departments and hospitals, in the identification of snake bites so the proper anti-venom could be administered.
It was during this time that he met and married his first wife, Carolyn, and together they had a son, Jon.
His experience in law enforcement combined with his love of animals led him to work as an armed canine officer with a private security firm. Later in life, he held various positions as an unarmed security officer.
Recently, Gary reconnected with a love from his past, Patti Retterer. The two had dated when they were young. Gary began searching for her again in 2009, but it wasn’t until late in 2019, that he found her. After forty years, the two reconnected, and had plans to be married.
Gary was a gentle, giving and loving man, with a heart of gold. His gentle nature, sense of humor, belief in kindness, and empathy towards those in need made the world a better place and he will be greatly missed.
Gary is survived by his companion, Patricia Retterer; his son, Jon (Eliana) Brown: his mother Brenda (George) Tunder, 2 brothers, George (Christine) Tunder and P.J. (Kelly) Tunder; 2 sisters, Terri (Arthur) Kilkuts and Karen (Matthew) Mulig; 2 granddaughters, Angelica Brown and Valentina Brown, and numerous nieces, nephews and friends.
No services will be held at this time. The Glunt Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., Edinboro, is in charge of funeral arrangements.
Gary will be taken to his final resting place in California, where his ashes will be scattered in the desert by his son, Jon Brown.
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