HICKORY Brenda Bowman Proctor, loving wife, mother and grandmother, passed away this past Monday at 1 p.m., Aug. 12, at Forsyth Medical Center. Brenda will be remembered by many for her kind and loving heart. Brenda struggled with Parkinson's disease for almost 35 years and throughout her battle with Parkinson's she maintained an incredible spirit of love and affection for everyone that she knew and met. Her life was a testament to the strength of love, and she will be missed by all who knew her. Brenda Bowman was born in Hickory, July 31, 1942, to Ernest Lee and Kathleen Helton Bowman. She attended Hickory High School, where she met Dean Proctor. Dean and Brenda were married while Dean Proctor was attending University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. Their marriage began a 59 year long adventure of life that included over five decades of close involvement in the civic and social growth of the City of Hickory. Throughout her life, Brenda was a dedicated mother and grandmother. The affection and attention that Brenda showed to everyone that she met was magnified in her loving kindness towards children. Brenda is greatly missed by her five grandchildren, Amelia, Andrew, William, James, and Taylor. Brenda had the unique ability to relate to everyone in an understanding and compassionate manner. This trait could be seen in the way she treated every child she met in a way that made them feel special and loved. Her remarkable sense of understanding others stemmed from a deep well of love. She never seemed to run short of compassion, understanding, forgiveness or love. Over the course of almost 60 years of marriage, Brenda and Dean were known as an inseparable couple who were involved in the civic, political and social life of Hickory. Everyone who knew Brenda remembers her indomitable spirit and her giving nature. She became very involved with horses as her two daughters, Kim and Beth, became old enough to ride and compete in equestrian events. Brenda would load up the horses and drive a truck and trailer hundreds of miles where the children would compete. She had many lifelong friends who she met as a result of her involvement in the equestrian community. Brenda B. Proctor is survived by her loving husband and partner of 59 years, H. Dean Proctor; and by her sisters, Thesta B. LaFavre and husband, Don, Patty Sherrill; and her brother, Harold Bowman and wife, Diane. Brenda is survived by her daughter, Kimberly Proctor Buckner and husband, Jason, and their daughter, Taylor Susanne Buckner; and her daughter, Elizabeth Proctor Gaither and husband, James, and their four children, Amelia Wyant Gaither, Andrew Proctor Gaither, William Worth Gaither and James Nicholas Gaither. Brenda is also survived by her brother- and sister-in-law, Rick and Becky Ward. A memorial service will be held at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church of Hickory, Thursday, Aug. 15, at 3 p.m. The Rev. Chris Webb will officiate. The family will receive friends in the church fellowship hall following the service. Memorials may be made to the Brenda B. Proctor Fund for Excellence in Parkinson's Disease Research. Checks should be made payable to "The Medical Foundation of NC" and mailed to UNC Medicine, 123 West Franklin St., Suite Suite 510, Chapel Hill, NC 27516. Please visit uncmedicine.org/proctorfund to contribute online. On checks, please note that the donation is a memorial for Brenda Proctor/Proctor Fund for Excellence in Parkinsons's Disease Research. Memorials can also be directed to the Omega Horse Rescue Fund, 8272 Woodbine Road, Airville, PA 17302. Bass-Smith Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the Proctor family and online condolences may be sent at www.bass-smithfuneralhome.com.
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