Bipeds of Brookland: David Brown
David Brown was “born and reared in Washington DC.” He recounts fond memories of a city where “people spoke to each other. Men gave the ladies a tip of the brim. I would have never made it to 15 years old if I had not learned to tip my hat and say ‘Yes, sir’ and ‘Yes, ma’am.’ DC was made up of a lot of Southerners and they brought their habits, their manners… When you respect people you respect yourself, and I’ve never forgotten that to this day. 73 years old and I love being nice, it does everything a pill will never touch. It makes you feel good.”
Mr. Brown has enjoyed living in Brookland for many years. “This is a neighborhood where everybody knows everybody. . . When I moved in, people had a picnic for you. Got your name from the realtor and had a cake with your name on it.” He and his wife raised three girls, who now live nearby and give him the chance to see his two grandchildren.
Mr. Brown served as a police officer in DC until he injured his back while chasing someone down a stairwell. He later worked for years as a Federal Marshall in the DC courthouse. After retiring, he volunteered tutoring 2nd and 3rd grade students at DC elementary schools for several years. “It’s a pleasure because in all those classes there’s diamonds there.”
He now spends his time at home and loves sitting on his front porch. He tells of a neighbor lady passing by and waving good morning. When she returned that evening to see him, still on the porch, she questioned, “Mr. Brown did you get up at all today, out of that chair?” To which he responded, “I really didn’t have a need.” She smiled and gave him a friendly good night.
Bipeds of Brookland: A semi-weekly series introducing the people who make Brookland their home, one step at a time.
Article and photo by Tom Sabella