Timothy P. Browne
December 10, 1952 - November 10, 2016
This week our community mourns the great loss of Timothy P. Browne, who passed away at his home in Manchester by-the-Sea on Nov. 10.
A Midwestern transplant (by way of Japan, New York City, and many stops in between), Tim had made Manchester his home for the past 25 years. Emanating with his warmth and generosity, 13 Vine Street was a gathering place for his three daughters -- Emily, Kelsey & Piper -- and the endless friends, family members and strangers that he opened his doors to over the years.
Singing Beach was his second home, where you could often find him sipping an evening cocktail as the sun went down, teaching his new granddaughter about the tides, or spearheading a midnight swim to the buoys under the stars. From Lobster Cove to Christo’s Coffee Cup to Captain Dusty’s, he brought his enormous heart, signature bow ties, bright blazers, and irreplaceable sense of humor everywhere he went. A long-time Green Bay Packers fan and native Cheesehead, he never missed a game. He appreciated Harley Davidsons, Martin guitars, his fleet of crappy cars, a good Manhattan and seizing every possible opportunity to embarrass his three daughters (and all their friends and especially their boyfriends).
Tim was born on Dec. 10, 1952 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Bill & Patsy Browne. He was a twin brother, part of an iconic clan of mischief-makers and rabble-rousers. He and his brothers wreaked loving havoc on the quiet suburbs of northern Milwaukee and the wits of their endlessly patient eldest sister.
Upon high school graduation, Tim traveled to Kyoto, Japan, battered copy of Siddhartha in hand, to join a monastery and study Buddhist teachings. It was there he fell deeply in love with the country, whose culture and traditions would shape his life forever.
He spent the time after continuing his travels with a backpack and acoustic guitar -- hitchhiking across Southern Asia, through Afghanistan and Iran, before ultimately arriving, pockets empty but eyes open, in Torino, Italy where he bought a ticket home.
He enrolled at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where he studied Japanese and Computer Science. He studied abroad at Waseda University, also working as an announcer for a leading Japanese television station.
When his undergraduate studies came to an end, Tim enrolled in Columbia University’s Japanese graduate program in 1978 and picked up a part-time job at the Metropolitan Opera. It was here that he would meet his future wife Catherine, on her first day of work, where she instantly noticed him -- due to the fact that he was breaking many rules by dribbling a beat-up basketball down the opera house’s historic halls.
Tim and Catherine quickly built a life together on the Upper West Side, where they “borrowed” electricity from understanding friends and made many a pilgrimage to Catherine’s parents in South Sutton, New Hampshire, where their New England roots began to grow.
A year after meeting, Tim was offered a job in Kyoto, Japan. He and Catherine moved overseas together in 1982 where she never had to worry about losing him in a crowd because he stood a foot taller -- and talked seven decibels louder -- than everyone else. They were married in 1983 in New Hampshire and moved home permanently a few years later upon the arrival of their first daughter, Emily. The family settled in Harvard Square, where they welcomed a second daughter, Kelsey, before ultimately moving to Manchester by-the-Sea where their third daughter, Piper, was born.
Professionally, Tim brought his instincts for innovation to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Media Laboratory, Thinking Machines, Lotus Notes and IBM. He went on to co-found and run Infoteria Corporation and, most recently, xStream Excitement Inc. He was also the co-founder of the International Children’s Digital Library (ICDL), which today remains the largest digital children’s library in the world. At the time of his death, Tim was continuing his philanthropic endeavors through serving as the Chairman of the Manchester Public Library’s Board of Trustees.
His memory will live on with his three daughters, Emily, Kelsey, and Piper; his two sons-in-law, Alex and Eric; his former wife and forever friend Catherine; his long-time partner, Sarah; her three daughters, Farren, Mimi and Alice; his siblings, Pete, Greg and Connie; his entire Midwestern family; his canine sidekicks, Charlie and Otis; and his beautiful granddaughter, Natalie June.
A memorial service will be held on Friday, Nov. 18 at Singing Beach at 2:30 p.m. All are welcome.
To send flowers to the family of Timothy P. Christopher Browne, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
In the event that there is an error in the information presented, please contact the funeral home by clicking here.