Andrew Brown.tiff

Andrew Joseph Brown, 89, died March 9, 2021 at Nielsen Place in Bemidji, MN.

Andrew was born May 20th, 1931 in Rhame, ND, son of Wilbur and Catherine (Mason) Brown. He served in the Army from 1951-1953. He married Helen Madonna Lutz on August 26, 1954 in Bowman, ND. He worked as a teacher for 32 years, retiring in August 1993.

Andy grew up on a farm in Slope County North Dakota. In his spare time, he enjoyed riding around the countryside on his Indian motorcycle. He also reflected on times spent tied to the hood of an old army jeep, chasing and trying to lasso antelope. He dropped out of secondary school in the 8th grade and worked several odd jobs prior to being drafted into the Army.

Following his service, Andy moved to Bowman, ND and met his future wife, Madonna. They had a whirlwind romance, married and started a family in 1954. Andy was interested in all things technical and decided to go to college and pursue a degree in Physics. He always wanted to be a mechanical engineer, but job opportunities pushed him towards Physics. He graduated from Black Hills State University in Spearfish, SD, and started his teaching career in Scranton, ND and after three years moved his growing family to Grand Forks to pursue his post-graduate degree in Physics. This prepared him for his University teaching position in Bemidji, MN.

Andy enjoyed teaching. He worked long hours preparing for classes and making time for students. He conducted multiple research projects on various topics including the aurora borealis, passive and active solar heating, and alternative fuels for home heating. He was active with student groups, taught seminars and organized yearly science fairs. His love of learning led him to North Dakota State University to pursue another graduate degree in Mechanical engineering that prepared him for implementing a new BSU degree program in Engineering Physics.

Andy had a passion for all things mechanical. He loved restoring antique farm implements back to life for a few more years of use and he used these opportunities to teach his children mechanical aptitude and self-sufficiency. He was a handy woodworker and carpenter and mechanic and his passion was to always be learning new ways to solve problems. He also had a passion for square dancing and he and Madonna would attend many area dances over the years.

In his retirement years, he volunteered much of his time at various organizations and also helped neighborhood high school students in their math and science classwork. He also found time to build his wife her new house after many years of waiting.

Andy was a loving, husband, son, father and grandfather, and will be greatly missed. He is preceded in death by his wife and brothers and one great grandchild.

Andy is survived by a daughter: Valerie (Kelly) Stenson of Bemidji, MN; four sons: Roger (Lynn Caroll) Brown of St. Paul, MN, Wil (Cindy Selnes) Brown of Stillwater, MN, Allen “Tom” (Becky) Brown of Bemidji, MN and Andrew Jr. (Kris) Brown of Duluth, MN; grandchildren: Beau, Iann, Alissa, Daniel, Alex, Ashley, Lucas, Annika, Jackie, Maximilian and Sebastian; great-grandchildren: Jacinda, Jaxon and Jayde.

Condolences may be left at

Private graveside services will be at Pine Ridge Cemetery in Turtle River, MN held at a later date.

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