Albert Brown obituary (1934 – 2021) – Latham, NY

Brown, Albert J. Jr. LATHAM Albert Joseph Brown Jr., 86, of Latham, passed away on November 15, 2021, with his family by his side and his loving wife, Sue, and eldest daughter, Cathy, awaiting kiss above. A longtime resident of Loudonville, Al was born December 18, 1934 in Cohoes, son of the late Pauline Kopcza and Albert J. Brown Sr. He grew up in Cohoes and Crescent, where he learned the value of hard work, the importance of faith and the skill to catch nocturnal caterpillars for fishing trips with his father. He was a trustworthy person who helped build and manage his parents’ gas station at the foot of the Crescent Bridge. At the behest of his parents, he focused on education, graduating from Christian Brothers Academy in Albany as a lieutenant colonel in 1953, and becoming the first in his family to graduate from college when he graduated. graduated from Manhattan College in 1957. Through a blind date in college arranged by best friend Paul Cooney and his then-girlfriend (now wife), Phyllis, Al met the love of his life , Susan Elizabeth Gladding. It was a game that thrived for 61 years; Sue and Al were married at St. Vincent de Paul Church in Albany on February 7, 1959. She predeceased him in 2020. After serving in the United States Army, Al began a distinguished 33-year career with National Commercial Bank and Trust Co., known today as KeyBank / KeyCorp. Al attended the Stonier Graduate School of Banking at Rutgers University and gradually rose through the executive ranks, being appointed President of KeyBank of Southeastern New York in 1977. In 1981, he was promoted to Executive Vice President of KeyCorp at Albany, helping to lead the company through an era of explosive growth. He founded Key Mortgage Funding, as the first CEO and President of KeyBank USA. He is also the author of three books on the banking sector and has been the mentor of many banking professionals. In retirement, Al founded the banking consultancy firm The Belvedere Group, wrote children’s books on the importance of kindness, and wrote a regular column for the Albany Business Review for several years. He and Sue then split their time between Loudonville and Davenport, Florida. Al has dedicated his time and resources to a wide range of educational, religious, community and philanthropic activities. He has served as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Maria College in Albany, Child Find of America, and Oneonta Community Chest, as well as Director of St. Joseph’s Housing Corp. in Albany, chairman of the Albany Diocesan School Board and member of the board of directors of the LaSalle Institute in Troy, where he co-chaired a major fundraising campaign in the late 1990s. Long-time advocates of Catholic education, Al and Sue have supported many school programs in the diocese, including two libraries and countless books donated in memory of their beloved daughter, Catherine Mary Brown, who died in 1969. In 2001, Al received Midsummer’s Day. Neumann Award for Supporting Catholic School Education, and in 2010 the Diocese of Albany honored Al and Sue for their years of dedicated support for Catholic education with its Beacon of Hope Award. They sponsored the tuition and construction of children’s homes in Kenya and many other projects for organizations in the Dioceses of Albany and Orlando including Mercy House in Albany, Community Maternity Services / Farano Center for Children, CBA , LaSalle, Manhattan College, The College of Saint Rose, and the Beta Center in Orlando, Florida. Al was a longtime parishioner and administrator of St. Pius X Church in Loudonville, where as chairman of the parish council he led a major fundraising campaign to update and expand the church and school . It was in Saint-Pie that he forged a lasting friendship based on vision, faith and spirit with the late Reverend Michael Farano. Al has always loved Father Farano’s homilies – he just wished they were a little shorter. Father Farano wished Al was a little calmer. Al was a member of the Albany Country Club and always enjoyed a round of golf with his children, sons-in-law and grandchildren. An artist and handyman at heart, he has regularly built and painted custom dollhouses for his children and grandchildren, as well as the Sunshine Foundation Dream Village for children in Davenport. He was always ready with a hot pool and a cold drink whenever his family and friends visited Florida. Grandchildren could count on Grandpa for a vigorous game of chess or checkers and a good box of donuts. His own children could count on him for a game of 20 Questions about their lives and careers, his unconditional support and his always wise advice. Firmly believing that life is meant to be celebrated, Al and Sue have hosted big Thanksgiving dinners, Lake Belvedere vacations in Otsego County, summer gatherings, and regular trips to Disney World – in addition to ‘countless baptisms, first communions, graduation ceremonies, weddings and birthdays. . Al spent his final years alongside his beloved wife, setting an example of love, dedication and tenderness that touched everyone who knew him. He is survived by nine children: Margaret Brown of Cohoes, Patricia Derocher (Bob) of Loudonville, Jennifer Horn (Bill) of York Harbor, Maine, Cynthia Brandolini (Joe) of Gastonia, NC, Matthew Brown (Julie) of Harrington Park , NJ, Anita Mahon (Ken) of Budd Lake, NJ, Andrew Brown (Julie) of Pearl River, NY, Carolyn Ustin (Mark) of Albany and Elizabeth Goyette (late Chris) of Latham; two sisters, Marleen Riley (late Jim) of Penfield, NY, and Judy Cox (Terry) of Edgewater, Florida; one brother, Bill Brown (MaryLou) of Rochester; sisters-in-law, Frances Gladding (late Dick) of Clifton Park and Mary Gladding (late Bill) of West Sand Lake; 34 grandchildren (and five spouses); four great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews. Al’s family will receive visitors from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday at Dufresne & Cavanaugh Funeral Home, 149 Old Loudon Road, Latham. A Christian funeral mass will be held Friday at 10:00 am at St. Pius X Church, 23 Crumitie Road, Loudonville, with interment to follow at St. Mary’s Cemetery, Waterford. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the Farano Center for Children through Catholic Charities-Community Maternity Services at or the St. Catherine’s Center for Children at org. For directions, information, to light a souvenir candle or to order flowers for the family, please visit

Published by Albany Times Union November 16-18, 2021.

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