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FRED BROWN is a retired Senior Writer for The Knoxville News-Sentinel. He was a working journalist for more than 45 years and is a member of the Scripps Howard Hall of Fame. He is a recipient of the Tennessee Associated Press Managing Editor’s Malcolm Law Trophy for Feature Writing and the National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship in Journalism at the University of Michigan (1983-84). Brown most recently published with the University of Tennessee Press “Marking Time: East Tennessee’s Historical Markers.”
From 2000 to 2005, Brown traveled extensively through France collecting history of American, French and German World War II veterans. He has also traveled to Belgium, Korea, Thailand, Cambodia, Germany, Scotland and England on story assignments.
In 1984, he crossed into East Berlin through Checkpoint Charlie and spent May Day at the Berlin Wall and inside Communist East Berlin for the May Day Parade along Marx-Engels Platz. Also in 1984, Brown visited Dachau, the Nazi Death Camp of the Holocaust.
In 1985, Brown traveled extensively throughout South Korea. He spent one day at the 38th Parallel and Panmunjom on the North Korean Border, visiting the “Peace Village” along the dangerous Demilitarized Zone.
Just prior to the visit to Korea, Brown was in Thailand for close to three weeks along the Thai-Cambodia border writing about refugees. He went across the Cambodia border to stay with Buddhist monks who were slipping Khmer cultural materials back into Cambodia against Communist Vietnam orders.
In addition, Brown covered Gulf War I from Dhahran, Saudi Arabia during Desert Shield. As part of that reporting, he went out on a desert reconnaissance mission with U.S. Army troops to the Kuwait-Saudi border.He also covered a time of Palestinian unrest from Ramallah on the West Bank and slipped clandestinely into Gaza City in the early 1990s during a Hamas shutdown of the city as Intifada No. 2 began. At that time, Brown visited Jerusalem, Hebron and the Tomb of he Patriarchs, was allowed inside the tomb, covered a street strike by Palestinians on the outskirts of East Jerusalem, visited Tel Aviv and Bethlehem. He also went into a refugee camp in Gaza and was accosted by Palestinians as well as Israelis on the way out of Gaza.
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By Fred Brown:
Sen. Howard Baker, known around Huntsville, Tennessee, as “Howard Henry,” said his longtime secretary Doris Lovett was a “remarkable, remarkable woman.”
Young pup secretaries scooting around the funeral home in Oneida, Tennessee, all said, through their tears, “She taught me everything I know.”
That probably goes for the retired U.S. Sen. Baker, whose last job was Ambassador to Japan for President George W. Bush, as well.