Jersey Cape regrets to inform of the passing of the former President of our Board of Directors, William J. Brown. First appointed to a directorship in 1978, Bill was a dedicated member of our Board for over 40 years. During his tenure, he served as Vice President and then President before resigning due to ongoing health issues in 2020.
Bill was known to say that wearing many hats is what keeps a person young, and he sure was a busy man! Born in Petersburg in Upper Township in the 1920s, one of Bill's first jobs was pumping gas in Tuckahoe. It was at this gas station that Bill first heard about the attack on Pearl Harbor. Shortly after, he enlisted in the Navy, and served for four years, which was the only time he did not live in Cape May County. His first assignment was the 69th Naval Construction Battalion, where he and his group worked following the D-Day landing at Omaha Beach to help allied forces come ashore. He was also involved with the Battle of the Bulge, where at one point he and his unit was cut off for a harrowing two weeks under constant fire and low on food less than two miles from the German border.
Back in the states, Bill was first met by many in Cape May while he served as Director and President of the First National Bank of Tuckahoe. He gave many their first loans, often via only a handshake and small slip of paper. Bill founded his own real estate office, the William J. Brown Agency, Inc. in Marmora, which sold homes throughout Upper Township. He also served as Cape May County's Commissioner on the New Jersey Pinelands Commission, a Member of the Upper Township Planning Board, a Member of the County Board of Taxation, and even a short-stint as Mayor of Upper Township.
One of Bill's missions was to support those with developmental disabilities. In addition to his directorship on Jersey Cape's board, he also served as an Engineer at the Woodbine Developmental Center. As a successful community leader and businessman, Bill always shared his business expertise in the management decisions and oversight of Jersey Cape.
Bill left his mark on Jersey Cape and we greatly appreciated his time and dedication to our organization. He will be missed dearly and his family is in our thoughts and prayers.