Kristi Dawn Brown

Kristi Dawn Brown, 45, of rural Parsons passed away peacefully with a little smile on her face at her home surrounded by her immediate family at 4:07 p.m. Thursday, June 21, 2018, after losing her courageous battle with esophageal cancer.

Kristi was born on Saturday, Oct. 7, 1972, in Parsons to James Donald “Jim” and Donna L. (Laver) Krokstrom.

Kristi attended Lincoln Elementary School, Parsons Middle School and Parsons High School. She played softball for many years for the First Baptist Church, was a cheerleader in high school and graduated from Parsons High School in May 1991.

In May 1993, she graduated from Labette Community College with a degree in commercial arts.

On Nov. 6, 1986, Kristi met the love of her life, Craig Daniel Brown, when she was 15 and he was 16, and they knew instantly they were meant for each other for life. Four years later, they married on Saturday, Nov. 9, 1991, at the First Baptist Church in Parsons when she was 19 and he was 20. They had their life planned out, waiting five years after marriage to start their family. They bought their dream home in the country surrounded by three acres of beautiful trees in May 1996.

Kristi was employed at Pizza Hut and Revco Drug during high school. Right after graduating from college in 1993, she began employment with the Parsons Sun in the advertising department as a graphic designer, which she dearly loved. She resigned in November 1998 when her husband was killed while serving the Parsons Fire Department to become a stay-at-home mother for the next 19 years. In lieu of a professional career, she chose to raise her children, who were always her No. 1 priority in life. She fondly referred to her family as “The Brown Bears” and her four bear cubs (which included a set of twins) called her “Mama Bear.”

In March 2017, she ventured into the flea market business, jumping in with both feet, working day and night to get her store, The Emporium, ready to open on Nov. 7, 2017. She had a great business mind as well as having great artistic and design ability that she implemented in her store. She was so excited about this new venture in her life, now that three of her cubs were grown and had left her Brown Bear home to follow their own dreams. However, in late January 2018, her health began to decline and from then on she was unable to get back into the store to complete and enjoy her own dream.

She enjoyed life, saw the bright side of situations, she looked at her glass as half full, never half empty. She had a great sense of humor with the ability to make others laugh and had a very loving heart. She was a very strong, independent woman, never to be underestimated, as she was also known to be quite sassy. She wasn’t afraid to call someone out that was involved in any wrong-doing toward herself or to her loved ones. She always did her research and had facts to back up her case or beliefs. She was well organized in every aspect of her life. All these traits and more were passed on to all four children.

Kristi was a very proud mom and the No. 1 fan of all her children, enjoying and attending every event of their lives, ranging from dance, karate, soccer, cheerleading, proms, softball, baseball, basketball, football, golf, school plays, chess tournaments, college sorority events and absorbing all the knowledge she possibly could about the United States Marine Corps. She accompanied her eldest daughter to Washington, D.C., the summer of 2015 to accept a college scholarship from the National Fallen Firefighters Association; traveled to KU and K-State to get each of her girls moved and settled at college; and to San Diego, California, in mid-January 2018 to attend her eldest son’s U.S.M.C. graduation from boot camp. She was very saddened when she was unable to attend her eldest daughter’s college graduation from the University of Kansas on May 12, 2018.

Kristi is survived by her four children, Kalee Brown of Lawrence, Katlin Brown of Manhattan, USMC Pfc. Colton Brown of Twenty-Nine Palms, California, and Holden Woodward of the home; her mother, Donna Krokstrom of Parsons; her grandmother, Hazel Laver of Parsons; her uncle, Harley Dean Laver of Iola; her aunts, Lana Laver of Chanute, Connie Schmidt and her husband, Gregg, of Yates Center and Gale Test and her husband, Mark, of Corpus Christie, Texas; a brother-in-law, Scott Baker and his wife, Tammy, of Parsons; a sister-in-law, Cathy Robertson and her husband, Drew, of Parsons; two nephews, Riley Baker and Cory Medlam, both of Parsons; one niece, Stepheni Sotiropoulos; great-nephews, Jax and Kace Sotiropoulos of Fort Myers, Florida; her mother-in-law, Jane Warren of Claremore, Oklahoma; seven first cousins, Kevin Krokstrom, Karl Krokstrom, Angie Eheart, Adrianne Deer, Shawn Ludlum, Brandon and Vanessa Test; and a very special “sister” best friend, Brenda Ruark of Erie, who was there for Kristi always.

Kristi was preceded in death by her husband, Craig Brown, on Nov. 24, 1998; her father, Jim Krokstrom, on July 2, 2006; her father-in-law, Danny Brown, on Feb. 2, 2004; her maternal grandfather, Harley Laver; her paternal grandparents, Don and Virginia Krokstrom; her uncle, Fred Krokstrom; and a special “grandma,” Fern McDaniel.

The service will be at 10 a.m. Friday at Forbes-Hoffman Funeral Home in Parsons. Burial will follow at South Mound Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home.

The family suggests memorials to the Holden Woodward Educational Fund. These may be left at or mailed to Forbes-Hoffman Funeral Home, P.O. Box 374, Parsons, KS, 67357.


Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
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