COVID-19 Takes Investigator's Life After He Fought A Courageous Battle
On Saturday, July 25, 2020, Investigator Mark Brown, 53. passed away from COVID-19 complications. It is believed he contracted the virus from exposure while on duty. Deputy Brown's funeral will be held at the Chapelwood United Methodist Church on Saturday, August 8. The funeral was by invitation only due to the pandemic, but it was made available to watch via live stream at online.chapelwood.org. Brown is survived by his wife, Michelle, four children, Christopher, Isabella, Abigail, Jacob, and his mother.
Harris County Sheriff's Office Precinct 5 is mourning the loss of one of their own, Deputy Investigator Mark Brown. Brown served the last three years with Precinct 5, and his career began with the Hempstead Police Department, which included 18 years of service as a Spring Branch ISD police officer. Ted Heap, Harris County Constable told Fox 26 Houston, "Mark Brown represented the very best of Precinct 5. Whether he was on patrol or investigating an unsolved case, he was a dedicated and hard-working deputy who sought only to protect our residents and see that justice was served." Deputy Brown became a part of the Precinct 5 family in March 2017 and served as a patrol deputy in the Central District. He became a Uniformed Investigative Deputy in the department's Special Operations Division in 2019.
A Houston native, Brown graduated from Spring Woods High School in 1985. While studying criminal justice at Dallas Baptist University in 1988, he was named a 2nd team All-American baseball player. Mark was known as a good man with a kind soul, he contributed to his community and country with great passion, and his loss will be profoundly mourned. "You never think it's going to happen to you," said Michelle Brown. "Here I am, a widow, and my children are fatherless. When it was time for him to go to work, I'd always say come home to me, Brown. He'd look at me and smile and say always. I'm so grateful I was able to bring him home for the last 24 hours of his life."
The Toll Taken by COVID
The cost of COVID is crushing everyone everywhere. Deputy Investigator Brown is just one member of law enforcement in the Houston area who has died from COVID-19. Houston recently reached 100,000 total COVID-19 cases, and many departments are struggling with staff shortages. The Harris County Deputy Constables Associations hosted a benefit luncheon for Mark on Thursday, June 25, at their command station. The luncheon was held at the behest of a family friend who owns a food truck. The truck was there from 11 am to 1 pm, and it served up cheeseburgers, chips, and more. Deputies and officers came out from all over in support of Mark Brown and his family. The members donated to the family and took the food that was purchased from the food truck and was donated to feed the nursing staff battling COVID-19 in the community. There was also a GoFundMe account set up to help with funeral expenses, and more than $65,000.00 was donated.
A Daughter's Graduation
Investigator Mark Brown was hospitalized before his daughter's graduation day. Bella was graduating from High School. Ted Heap, Harris County Constable from Precinct 5, organized a drive-thru celebration for other officers and community members to be there for his daughter on graduation day. Everyone lined up outside of the Brown home and began a drive-by – all the while honking, showing signs for support, and cheering on Bella.
Ted Heap posted this comment on his Facebook page along with a video of the event. "Grad Without Dad. Her dad, Investigator Mark Brown, is hospitalized right now, so our Precinct 5 family teamed up with her own family for a special graduation drive-by celebration yesterday. We're praying for a quick and full recovery for him and a memory that she'll never forget despite the circumstances of her senior year. Congratulations, Bella!"
After the loss of Investigator Brown, Ted Heap made a brief statement to the media. "Mark Brown represented the very best of Precinct 5. Whether he was on patrol or investigating an unsolved case, he was a dedicated and hard-working deputy who sought only to protect our residents and see that justice was served."