Our Staff

We invite you to discover who has made Brown Funeral Home & Cremation Services the ultimate provider of creating healing experiences in the community. This section contains the heritage, vision, and the people behind Brown Funeral Home & Cremation Services's reputation of quality, sincerity, and trust.

Sir Winston Bailey Brown

Sir Winston is our English Golden Retriever Therapy Dog.   

His favorite time of the day is when the staff is baking fresh cookies. Winston is sneaky, and always tries, but is unsuccessful in finding his  way into the kitchen to get his paws on some cookies.

Sir Winston is available as a greeter, is trained to provide affection, comfort and love to people in their time of need and during funeral services.  If you ever need to spend some time with a caring dog, Sir Winston is always up for the task, he truly enjoys meeting new people.

Timothy Brown 

Tim graduated from Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science in 1995, and has owned and operated the funeral home since 2004.

He holds a valid Funeral Directors License in Kentucky and Michigan, and is also a Certified Pre-Plan Consultant,  Certified  Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) and Certified Celebrant, receiving all from the National Funeral Directors Association. 

In 1997, Tim, along with his wife Peggy and their two children, moved to Michigan. Tim has been an active member of the community since that time.  He served on the Board of Directors and as an Ambassador for the Four Flags Area Chamber of Commerce; President of the Berrien and Cass County Big Brothers/Big Sisters ; Board of Directors for Hospice at Home; and is a Charter Member and a Director for Kiwanis of Southwest Michigan, he currently serves on the Board of Directors for Berrien County Cancer Services Inc.

Mandy Rodriguez

Mandy has been a member of the Brown Funeral Home staff since they first began serving the community in 2004.  She currently assists with creating meaningful experiences with families, before the time of need, working with veterans on their benefits and also guiding families after a loss to help them navigate the many different avenues of a loved one's estate.

Mandy originally received her teaching degree from Western Michigan University; however she found her passion when she transitioned to serving families in her current capacity.  She brings over 20 years of  preplanning  assistance to families, is a certified preplanning consultant (CPC), has obtained her mortuary science degree and is a licensed funeral director and embalmer.

Connecting with family and friends through trips to different states, trips "Up North" to a favorite family hangout or relaxing by a campfire are some of her favorite pastimes.  She enjoys Michigan Basketball, gardening and home improvement projects, but her sons, Brennan and Tyler are her favorite conversation topic.

Heather Heath 

In 2002 Heather graduated from Wayne State University with her bachelor’s degree in Mortuary Science, completed her apprenticeship in Kalamazoo, and in 2006 Heather joined the team at Brown Funeral Home & Cremation Services as a Licensed Funeral Director, Embalmer, and Cremation Specialist. 

Since moving to the area Heather has become very active in the community.  When not working, Heather volunteers for several causes including serving as a Victim’s Advocate for the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department’s Victim Services Unit for over 10 years, while living in New Buffalo she served as President of the New Buffalo Township Fire Department Auxiliary for over 7 years and is a current member of Niles Service League.. 

When not working she can be found with her partner, Tim, working on their house, off-roading on their ATVs, camping, and spending time with their two pups, Petunia the English Bulldog and Ella the miniature Dachshund.

Tami Helmuth-Delong 

Tami Helmuth-DeLong joined the Brown Funeral Home staff in October of 2017, after several years in the funeral industry. 

She is currently assisting families in their journey, creating meaningful services.  She is dedicated to serving her community during a difficult time period. 

Tami makes her home in Dowagiac with her husband Brian and their three children. 

Laurie Vergon

Laurie began her career in funeral service when she joined our staff in 2015 as Office Manager. 

Although her professional experience has been primarily in the advertising industry, her most recent experience had been working closely with families at a child development center.

Along with her caring and dedicated co-workers, she looks forward to continuing to serve grieving families at such a critical time in their lives and feels that her current position has truly been the most rewarding of her career. 

Laurie has always been an active volunteer in her community.  She has served on several committees, and has worked with many different organizations over the years,  including Girl Scouts, Buchanan Community Schools and Meals on Wheels. 

She and her husband Scott live in Buchanan with their daughter Katelyn, their eldest daughter Hannah, is currently an engineering student at GVSU.

As a family, they enjoy time spent with their dogs Bo, Brody,  Bentley and Bella, watching U of M football, Buchanan Bucks sporting events and family gatherings.

Teri Anstiss-Ottinger

Teri was born in Niles and raised her children Christopher and Ashlyn Thompson here.  She attended First Assembly Christian School and graduated from Niles Community Schools. Following graduation, she received her degree from Southwestern Michigan College.

 She brings over 18 years of experience in assisting families, friends, and community in funeral service; this is something she has grown to feel honored and privileged to do in her hometown.

She is also a member of the American Legion Ladies Auxiliary in Three Oaks Michigan, Post #204 and active with Meals On Wheels.

Teri enjoys reading and traveling to anywhere tropical with her husband Doug.  When not traveling, Teri’s greatest joy is spending time with her granddaughter, Olivia. 

Larry Thompson

After retiring from a lifelong career working for natural gas companies, Larry began his career in the funeral industry, joining our staff in 2012.

Always one who enjoys helping others, he served his community for 28 years on the Buchanan City Fire Department and for 15 years on the Bertrand Township Fire Department. He also held 2 terms on the Buchanan City Commission and 2 terms as a SMCAS board member. In addition, Larry has been a member of American Legion Post 51 in Buchanan for over 50 years, and is currently serving as the post chaplain.  

Larry and his wife, Patsy, live in Buchanan. Together they have 6 children, 12 grandchildren and  10 great-grandchildren. 

Larry loves University of MICHIGAN football, cookouts and time spent with family and friends. He also enjoys hunting and an occasional game of golf.