Louise Passarella Brown
Frances Louise Riddle Passarella Brown, age 95, passed away peacefully on Monday, May 25, 2020 at her daughter’s home in Leoma, Tennessee, attended by her twin daughters, Desda and Tanya, their spouses, Jim and John and her personal loving caregiver, Miss Natalie Baltazar.
Ms. Louise was a pioneer in telecommunications, beginning in August, 1946. For 72 years, she was at the helm of Loretto Telephone Company, providing essential service to her community. She built a state-of-the-art small, independent telephone company with the hard work of many employees over the years, as well as advice and assistance from family members.
Her other many accomplishments include serving as president of the Tennessee Telecommunications Association and serving many years on its Board of Directors. In 1990 she was selected one of the 100 Outstanding Telecommunications Executives in America by Telephony Magazine. She co-authored “Telephones for Tennessee,” a history of telephony in her state. She was also proud of her many years in the Tennessee Federation of Democrat Women. She was past president of Tennessee Leadership, a statewide program for women leaders. She established the Loretto Lift-Up Committee for community improvements, helped establish local mental health and domestic violence centers, and worked many years with tourism in her community.
Through the Adopt-A-School program, her company supported many activities and programs at Loretto Sacred Heart School. She was active in promoting the Loretto Band. A 1942 Graduate of Loretto High School, she supported many of its projects. She was also an active member of Loretto United Methodist Church.
Louise was always both intensely family-oriented and community-oriented. She had a love for her hometown of Loretto, like no other. She also had a great love for her county and state, and devoted her entire life to the well-being of all of them. She will be dearly missed.
She was preceded in death by her parents: George Adam Riddle and Beatrice Katherine White Riddle; brothers: Malcolm Jerome Riddle, John Royce Riddle, George Henry Riddle, Frederick Francis Riddle; sister: Virginia Clare Riddle; husband: Ralph Joseph Passarella; husband: Sayles L. Brown, Jr.; sons: Thomas Malcolm Passarella and Richard Nicholas Passarella; and stepson: Sayles L. Brown, III.
She is survived by one sister: Virginia Blanche Riddle Etienne of Loretto, TN; twin daughters: Desda Katherine Passarella Hutchins (Jim) of Leoma, TN and Tanya Passarella Sandy (John) of Collierville, TN; sons: Daniel Henry (Dan) Passarella (Anita) of Franklin, TN, Samuel Adam (Sam) Passarella (Linda Boan) of Lexington, SC and A J Passarella (Mary Beth) of Florence, AL; daughters-in law: Connie Henkel Passarella of Loretto, TN and Merlenne Newcombe Passarella of San Diego, CA; stepsons: Matthew (Matt) Coleman Brown (Lori) of Murfreesboro, TN, Gregory (Greg) Alan Brown of Florence, AL, Stephen Wesley (Wes) Brown of Taylor, MS; step-daughters-in-law: Kim Frakes Frasier of Lawrenceburg, TN, Kelli Whitehead Brown of Killen, AL and Patty Lane Brown of Iron City, TN; longtime dedicated Executive Assistant and devoted friend: Carolyn Thompson; twelve grandchildren; twenty great-grandchildren; four great-great-grandchildren; twelve step-grandchildren; four step-great-grandchildren; and many dear nieces and nephews.
Due to COVID-19 and in respect for the community’s health and safety, a public visitation for Frances Louise Riddle Passarella Brown will not be held. A private viewing for family and caregivers will be held Saturday, May 30, 2020 at Greenhill Funeral Home. A private graveside service will be at Loretto Sacred Heart Cemetery with Rev. Jeff Jacob officiating. Greenhill Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Heartfelt appreciation is expressed to all of her loving, dedicated caregivers over the years: Natalie Baltazar, Maria Sanchez, Hortensia Hernandez, Ruby Weathers, Ines Hernandez, Juana (Mari) Vazquez Hernandez, Viviana Juarez Hernandez, Sandra Yazmin Camacho, Lisa Hughes Wright, Cindy Jackson, Mary Lou Brown, Beneranda Hernandez and Maria Leon Vargas.
Louise dedicated much of her time and resources to the support of many community organizations and projects. In lieu of flowers, it would be most appropriate for remembrances to be made to one of these many causes, or to any organization of your choice. Some of her favorites were: Loretto Lift-Up, Loretto Sacred Heart Catholic School, Loretto Methodist Church, Lawrence County Library-Loretto, Lawrence County Education Foundation, Columbia State Community College, Lawrence County Higher Education Fund, Alzheimer’s Association, Page Robbins Adult Day Center- Alzheimer’s in Collierville, TN, Loretto High School Band, St. Bernard Abbey/School in Cullman, AL.