Madison County native, KBTX anchor succumbs to cancer

Posted 12/6/19

Former KBTX anchor and Madisonville High School graduate Joe Brown passed away Friday after battling a rare form of cancer.

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Madison County native, KBTX anchor succumbs to cancer

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Former KBTX anchor and Madisonville High School graduate Joe Brown passed away Friday after battling a rare form of cancer.

Brown, a member of the MHS Class of 1982, worked as a reporter and anchor for the Bryan-based television station. He joined the station in 1989 before leaving television to work as a public information officer in Bryan.

After 10 years in Bryan and a short stint at a Houston public relations firm, he had an opportunity to return to the station to anchor the 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. newscasts. He held this position from July of 2001 until his final sign off on July 16, 2010.

In August of 2019, Brown was diagnosed with a rare form of stage four gallbladder cancer,

During his fight with the disease, Brown’s friends set up a GoFundMe account to help support him and his wife, Lisa Brown, through the process. There was also a bank account set up at Wells Fargo branches named the “Joe Brown Cancer Fund”.

Hank Hargrave, Owner and Publisher of the Centerville News and former Publisher at the Madisonville Meteor, was Brown’s friend of over 45 years.

“(Brown) was a talented, funny and great friend growing up,” said Hargrave. “Childhood would not have been near the adventure it was without him. I have so many memories of our childhood escapades, I could write a book. He had a big heart, was generous with his advice to colleagues and a great friend.”

Hargrave grew up with Brown in Bedias. Brown was a year older, but the two were running buddies on the weekends. But on Saturday afternoons, one could find the two youngsters in front of a television watching ABC’s Wide World of Sports (especially when Evel Knievel was making a jump).

On Sundays, after church, Brown’s home would become the site of a ballgame with Jerry Allen Cole and Trae Poe.

Hargrave left the district to attend Anderson-Shiro High School after eighth grade, but the two would still see each other at church and at youth group. They sang in choir together with Poe, Cole, Ross and Joeli Thompson and Becky and Gail Rogers, among others.

“I will miss Joey on many levels,” said Hargrave. “But I know he is in a much better place, free of pain.”

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