Jay Brown, 88

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Jay M. Brown, 88, of Hopkinton, formerly of Hamden, Connecticut, passed away peacefully on Oct. 20. Jay was born in Brooklyn, New York, on July 26, 1933. He was the son of the late Sidney and Bertha (Bert) Brown. He was the beloved husband for 65 years of Merle (Kaminsky), father of Ellen (Mark) Factor of Hopkinton and the late Sidney Brown, brother of Michael (Greta) Brown of Monroe Township, New Jersey, and loving grandfather of Joshua, Eric and Samuel Factor.

Jay was a proud graduate of Erasmus High School, Brooklyn, New York. He held Master of Arts and Bachelor of Arts degrees from New York University in journalism and history. He received his Certificate in Education Administration from Southern Connecticut University. He was a passionate sports enthusiast who cheered for all New York teams despite his family’s attempts to convert him to a Patriots/Red Sox fan.

Jay was a history teacher in the New Haven school system for 23 years and was highly involved in various community organizations. He was a former Connecticut director of B’nai B’rith youth organization. He was a longtime member of Mishkan Israel synagogue in Hamden, Connecticut, where he served many years on the brotherhood board. He was an avid reader, a Holocaust scholar and collector of stamps, coins and political and sports memorabilia. He was president of the Connecticut NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) chapter and was passionate about improving the lives of people affected by mental illness. He will be sorely missed by his family and his community.

Funeral Services will be held at Mishkan Israel Cemetery, 60 Jewell Street, New Haven, on Friday, Oct. 22, at 11 a.m. Funeral arrangements are being handled by the Robert E. Shure Funeral Home, New Haven.

A memorial gathering will be observed at 8 McNeil Circle, Hopkinton, on Saturday, Oct. 23, from 4-8 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made in Jay’s name to Congregation Mishkan Israel, 785 Ridge Road, Hamden, CT 06517 or NAMI Connecticut (namict.org).