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April 20, 1924 - March 29, 2016
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Melvin Gilbert Brooks
April 20, 1924 ~ March 29, 2016
Melvin Gilbert Brooks, a resident of Montrose, Colorado since 1967, died Tuesday morning, March 29, 2016 at Valley Manor Care Center at the age of 91. Melvin, the son of Melvin G. Brooks Sr., and Lillian (Nagel) Brooks was born on April 20, 1924 in Flushing, New York. He spent his childhood and graduated from high school there in 1942. After completing courses and training at the United States Merchant Marine Academy at King’s Point, New York. he was given a commission in the United States Merchant Marine and served as an engineer aboard several merchant “Liberty” Ships bringing troops and supplies to Europe and North Africa during World War II.
Melvin then became employed by Grace Line, Inc. sailing aboard several civilian merchant ships traveling all over the world. In 1948 he returned home to help run the family business, Flushing Blue Print, Inc. During that time he met and married Shirley Mae Griesen.
Over the next several years, they traveled west and worked out in the oil fields in Oklahoma, and returned again in 1953 to help again with the family business until 1967. During those years, they had three sons, Phillip, Willy and Richard. When Melvin and Shirley had been in Oklahoma 15 years earlier, they had traveled into Colorado and loved it. An opportunity to purchase a business in Montrose, caught Melvin’s attention and six months later they left New York and headed west. Melvin purchased Adams Office Supply in Montrose in 1967 and moved his family there in June of that year. Melvin retired in 1990 and his son Willy, purchased and took over running the business. Melvin and Shirley spent many years pursuing their passion of hiking and camping in the San Juan’s and canyon country. They loved their motor home and being out in nature in the back country, something they continued to do until they were both about 80 years old.
Melvin is survived by his sons, Willy and wife Laurie and their daughters, Haley and Holly Brooks of Montrose; and Richard and Wife Connie of Montrose, and Richard’s daughter, Sara and husband Matthew Bowles, and great-grandson, Samuel of Spokane, Washington, brother, Jack, and wife Carol Brooks, of Williamsburg, Virginia; a sister Ann and husband Bernard Arles of Ormond Beach, Florida; son Richard and wife, Connie of Montrose; Melvin was preceded in death by his parents, brothers, Phil and Dick, his wife of 64 years, Shirley and his oldest son, Phillip.
A Graveside Service with Military Honors, will be held on Friday, April 1, 2016 at 1:00 P.M. at Valley Lawn Cemetery, south of Montrose. Son, Willy Brooks will officiate. Crippin Funeral Home & Crematory, in Montrose is assisting the family.