Darrin Brown, may his memory be for a blessing

09 July 2020

In early July, Osborne lost a beloved leader and dear friend, Darrin Brown.

Since 2015, Darrin was Senior Director of our ICAN Rikers Island discharge planning program. Not only did Darrin manage our work at Rikers Island that serves thousands of people each year, he brought his broad experience leading drug treatment programs, teaching social work students, and as a former Marine to leading his team, and supporting and inspiring his colleagues. He was collaborative, focused, and driven in his work to provide meaningful opportunities for people in jail and who had returned to the community. Just recently, Darrin was working to bolster our efforts to support people recently released from jail who were under 14-day post-release quarantine.

On July 9, Osborne staff gathered with Darrin's family to celebrate the countless ways that he touched this work and each of our lives. Osborne Board Member Rev. Dr. Alfonso Wyatt reflected on Darrin's life and created space for dozens of Osborne staff, colleagues from the field, and Darrin's family members to share their personal experiences, grieve, and remember his compassion, determination, and wonderful sense of humor.

I'd like to leave you with Darrin's own words that he shared with a member of his team about losing those we love. May his words guide each of us through our grief: “I thought I had to push through it [grief], to get to the other side. But I learned there is no other side. There is no pushing through it, but rather absorption, adjustment, acceptance. My grief is ongoing and it took a while for me to understand that it is not a task to finish, and move on, but rather an element of myself, an alteration of my being, a new way of seeing, a new definition of me that includes the life and memory of the ones I loved that now is embedded into my heart deeper than I can explain.  I am blessed to have known them, to have loved them, and to have been loved by them and so are you.”

Darrin Brown, may his memory be for a blessing.