Gayle Jean (McKillip) Brown

Gayle Jean (McKillip) Brown, passed away on Monday, August 24, 2020 after a courageous battle with lung cancer.  Gayle, the daughter of William and Berniece (Snapp) McKillip, was born December 20, 1941 at home in Andrew County, Missouri.  At age 4 Gayle moved to Sioux Falls with her family.  She grew up in the Sioux Falls area and attended Whipple grade school, South Sioux grade school, Canton high school until her senior year when she then graduated from Washington High School in 1959.  Gayle was a car hop at The Cottage in Sioux Falls where she met her future husband, Ralph Brown.

After graduating from high school Gayle started her 54 year long and lustrous career in insurance at EW Smith Company.  Gayle was united in marriage with Ralph Brown in Sioux Falls on December 23, 1959.  In 1962 Gayle and Ralph were blessed with a daughter, Cynthia Jean, and in 1965 they were blessed again with a son, David William to complete their family.

After EW Smith Company, Gayle worked at Reagan General Agency before joining Boen and Boxdorfer Insurance as a customer service representative where she became a licensed insurance agent.  In 1984 Gayle was named Insurance Woman of the Year.  After the split of Boen Boxdorfer Insurance, Gayle continued her career at Culbert Davis Insurance.  And in 1993 Gayle joined North Central Insurance to work with her old boss Dwane Boxdorfer until her retirement in 2014.

Gayle enjoyed working out in the yard at her acreage near Tea, SD, and she loved reading.  Gayle was known for finishing a book a week; she would even trade or sell many paperbacks every year.  Gayle was a very good cook, and she enjoyed fixing family dinners every Sunday.  Gayle was known for her pineapple upside down cake and chocolate rice krispy bars.   In December Gayle and Ralph celebrated their 60th anniversary with a family dinner at Minerva’s.  Gayle was a very devoted and loving wife and mother, and will be deeply missed.

Grateful for having shared her life are her husband, Ralph Brown, Tea, SD, daughter Cindy (Bill) Nelson, Tea, SD, and son David (Cindie) Brown, Santa Maria, CA, five sisters, Sharon (Forrest) Lewis, Pringle, SD, Betty Best, Sioux Falls, SD, Barb (Ken) Bradfield, Sioux Falls, SD, Kathy Best, Edgerton, MO, Linda (Jim) Hanson, Sioux Falls, SD, five brothers Bill (Sharon) McKillip, Wentworth, SD, Bob McKillip, Sioux Falls SD, Mike (Sharon) McKillip, Price, Utah, Barry (Colleen) McKillip, Batavia, OH, Mark (Dawn) McKillip, Coeur d’ Alene, ID, sister-in-law, Linda McKillip, Sioux Falls, SD, brother-in-law, Gary (Rikki) Jensen, Custer, SD, numerous nieces and nephews, and a host of other relatives and friends.

Gayle was preceded in death by her infant brother James in 1945, her brothers Gary in 1999, Kerry in 2004, and John in 2010, and her sister, Carolyn in 2013, as well as her parents William in 2006 and Berniece in 2013.

Gayle will be remembered for her happy disposition and positive attitude.  She was known for always dressing professional and she prided herself in taking care of her customers.  Due to COVID-19 a private family memorial service will be held in September.

Perhaps they are not Stars but rather Openings in Heaven where the love of our lost ones Shines Down to let us know they are Happy…..Eskimo Legend

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  1. Pat Bradfield on August 28, 2020 said:

    Cindy and family,
    What a beautiful picture of your Mom! My deepest sympathy on her passing. Losing a loved one is never easy, but know that she is at peace now and free of pain.
    My best to all of you! Pat

  2. Rod and Jane Carpenter on August 28, 2020 said:

    We are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  3. Joani Nelsen on August 29, 2020 said:

    I grew up with Gayle attending South Sioux Grade School……….then I worked with her at Regan General Agency….
    my sympathy to your family

  4. Dwane & Cheryl on August 30, 2020 said:

    To Gayles beautiful loving children and loving husband Ralph;
    We are so sorry for your loss.
    We loved her dearly.
    Gayle was truly a blessing to our family, the love she gave to our children when they were young was priceless. God gave our son the opportunity to care for her when she needed it.
    It was always a joy to visit with her, she had a beautiful infectious laugh when telling stories of her growing up years, raising her family and meeting her husband. She dearly loved her family, it showed in everything she did and said.
    Gayles parents and her brothers and sisters were blessed to have her as we were.
    I spoke with her several months ago not knowing the struggles her was going through, during our conversation I was able to let her know how much she meant to me and our family, and how truly grateful we were to have her.

  5. Dorothy Brinkman Yaeger on August 31, 2020 said:

    So sorry for your loss. Gail was a lovely lady. May God bless you and keep you and let his face shine soon you now and forever.