Hensel Showalter Brown of Charlotte Court House, VA, passed to meet his Lord on February 13, 2021 at the age of 88. He was born and raised in McGaheysville, VA, on the Shenandoah River. Hensel was a graduate of McGaysville High School.  After serving in the U S Navy during the Korean War, he attended Bridgewater College and James Madison University.  Hensel went to work upon graduation at the Naval Ordinance Lab in White Oak, MD.  He was the first employee to learn and teach Fort ran programming.  Hensel worked in the Wind Tunnel Division of the lab designing missiles.  He helped to design and put into action the Missile Polaris, and tiles, plus other important parts for re-entry of the space capsules.  While working at NOL he attended University of Maryland receiving further degrees in ballistic missiles designs.  Hensel retired from NOL and Dalgreen Naval Center in 1992.  He was an ardent golfer, fisherman, and bowler; Bowling in Pro Duckpins when not traveling for the government.  In his later years he loved his home, traveling to visit the children, gardening, and last but not least playing Bingo.

Hensel was preceded in death by his parents, Ruth and William Brown; two brothers, Merle and Fred Brown; and his youngest son, Kevin Lee Brown.

He is survived by his wife of sixty-six years, Shirley L. Brown; a daughter, Karen Herauf (Tom) of Diamondhead, MS; two sons, David W. Brown (Denise) of Woodstock, GA, and Alan L. Brown (Tenney) of Lexington, VA; six grandchildren, Andrea Nelson (Mike), Christi Magyar (Alex), Katie DeFord (Claude), Dan, Eric, and Kevin Brown; he was also blessed with six great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers please donate to the Charlotte County Rescue Squad for their marvelous service or a charity of your choice. The Browning-Duffer Funeral Home in Keysville, VA, is serving the family.

Condolence Messages

  1. Halla C Black

    16 February 2021 2 years ago

    I never had the pleasure of meeting Hensel Brown. I have, however, met his son Alan L. Brown of Lexington, VA a few times. Alan is a great person and I am sure Hensel was too. My sincere condolences to the Brown family.

  2. Manna

    16 February 2021 2 years ago

    Please accept my sincere condolences for the loss of an extraordinary man. It’s clear how loved and respected he was, and how he will be missed. What a blessing it was that he lived such a full, independent life to his last day. Peace be with you.

  3. Rita Myers

    16 February 2021 2 years ago

    This fine, caring and thoughtful man will be missed by all who knew him. He had a green thumb and loved to
    plant his gardens when able. Always sharing the bounties from his gardens with family and neighbors.
    Hensel was blessed with his precious wife and children, grandchildren and many friends. Prayers are
    extended to all of the family.

  4. Laura Harrawood

    16 February 2021 2 years ago

    My prayers are with your family. What a remarkable life Hensel lived. I met him once and enjoyed his lively energy in conversation at the ACTHA ride Tenney organized. I am sorry for your loss at this hard time, but grateful for your connection and memories. Laura Harrawood

  5. Will and Dana

    16 February 2021 2 years ago

    Thinking of you during this difficult time.

  6. Bobby & Edith Baldwin

    16 February 2021 2 years ago

    With heartfelt sympathy from
    the Baldwins.

  7. Kathleen Gardner

    18 February 2021 2 years ago

    I met Hensel many years ago when I married Nelson Gardner. I also visited his mother many times at her home in Waynesboro and at Bridgewater Home. it is sad to see our relatives pass on but that’s life. I know he will be missed.
    Always, Kathleen Gardner

  8. Louise Adams

    18 February 2021 2 years ago

    You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  9. Brandy

    22 February 2021 2 years ago

    I am so sorry for your loss. You all are in my thoughts and prayers.

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