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2013 Golden Valley Hall of Fame Inductee was an Original Founder of Ronald McDonald House

Larry Brown also coached youth baseball in Golden Valley and spent a significant part of his life helping people in many different ways.

The city of Golden Valley is inducting four citizens to the Golden Valley Hall of Fame, which honors those who have been affiliated with Golden Valley, made contributions to the community and become renown. The induction ceremony is 9 to 10:30 a.m. Friday, May 17, at Brookview Community Center.

Lawrence A. (Larry/Bubba) Brown spent his life working to improve and enrich his community and the world beyond. 

While growing up in North Minneapolis, Larry spent considerable time at the Phyllis Wheatley Settlement House, which he credited with much of his later success. After graduating from North High School in 1937, he attended Mankato State College on a football scholarship. He was drafted into the US Army in 1942 and spent World War II serving in a segregated unit in North Africa, Sicily, and Italy until he was wounded. 

Throughout his working career and afterwards, Larry used the experience he gained to help others. For example, his a stint as a tax auditor with the Minnesota Department of Revenue helped him set up an income tax withholding system in Uganda, East Africa under a contract with US Agency for International Development. 

Over the years, Larry coached football and baseball in Brooklyn Park, youth baseball in Golden Valley, and was an assistant football coach at North High for seven years. He also volunteered as a coach and mentor at Phyllis Wheatley, tutored in the Minneapolis Public Schools well into his 80s, and helped promote the RedTail Project, which educates people about the service of World War II's Tuskegee Airmen. 

He is perhaps most well known as one of the three original founders of the Ronald McDonald House in Minneapolis, which opened its first facility in 1979. Larry first recognized the need for housing for parents of hospitalized children in the early 1960s, when his daughter was being treated for leukemia at the University of Minnesota Hospital. Once again he chose to act. 

Larry and his wife, Jo, lived in Golden Valley for nearly 43 years and raised three children here. Golden Valley is grateful to Larry Brown for his many contributions to our society. 

Golden Valley’s Hall of Fame program was developed in 2011 by a group of citizens known as Bridge Builders as part of the community’s 125th Anniversary celebration. With support from the City’s Envision Connection Project Board of Directors, it recently became an annual community event.

(Information provided by the city of Golden Valley.)

Correction made: The wrong time for the Hall of Fame induction ceremony was mistakenly posted in this story on Golden Valley Patch. We apologize for the error.

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