Mary Lee Brossman and her identical twin sister, Ruthie, were born nearly two months early on March 12th, 1935, to Vernon and Iva Mooneyham on a wheat ranch four miles north of Copeland, Kansas. Because of a spring snowstorm, her father had to travel to town with his shotgun and convince the doctor to come to the house for the delivery. The doctor was just in time, but neglected to mark which one was born first. Birth certificates being what they were, she was marked as the first-born. Her first cradle was a shared shoe box laid near the wood stove for warmth. Soon to follow were sisters Doris, Deloris, and Alice with brother Don rounding out the family. Her father’s occupation took him all over the mid-west. From Wyoming to Missouri, Idaho, California, and back to Wyoming before settling down in Lewiston, Idaho at the beginning of her seventh grade.
She went through the next 5 years there going to school. Then one month before turning 18, she and her Dad had their last falling out and she and Ruthie moved out and got an apartment. She worked at the local theatre as an usher to pay her way. The rest of their family moved to San Diego that summer and she and Ruthie stayed, she wanted to finish High School there. In October, her father gave her money to come to San Diego and visit. On Halloween night, she met a sailor named Ronald Brossman and they fell in love. They were engaged shortly after, but she went back to Idaho to finish school. Then they were married on June 20, 1954 in Redwood City, California. Ron’s home port was San Diego, so she lived there in an apartment with Ruthie while he was still in the Navy. They had 2 children while in San Diego, Mary Ann and Jeannie. Sadly, Jeannie died at 1 week old from a heart valve problem and was buried there in San Diego. When Ron was out to sea for months at a time, Mary Lee wrote him a letter every night and mailed it the next day! When Ronnie was discharged, they moved to Boulder where Ron was going to college. They had 2 more children while living there, Allen and Dean.
In 1963, they purchased the home at Highland Lake where she and Ronnie focused on raising the family. Mary Lee worked at Hewlett Packard through all the years of her kids going through school. But she loved being a mother and her main focus was her kids. She always had supper for the family to eat together at the table. Like a lot of parents in that time period, Ron was the strict one and Mary Lee was the loving, understanding and not so strict Mother.
When she started getting grandkids, she loved watching them. Especially when her children needed a babysitter. She said that she wished that she could have had that option when she was raising kids.
Mary Lee loved cooking, camping and fishing. She loved to cook for a crowd and did often. Especially for all the Brossman kids’ friends, who were always around and welcome.
After they retired, Mary Lee and Ronnie started traveling more and one of their favorite trips each year was to go to Oregon and go salmon fishing on the Rogue River while staying with her sister Alice. Then they discovered River Lodge RV Park on the California/Arizona border. They started spending their winters there and made many friends there that they looked forward to seeing each year.
They sold their home at Highland Lake in 1996 and bought a new motorhome. Then they traveled extensively, getting to see Alaska, the Eastern Seaboard and the Deep South. Then in 2000, they purchased a home in Walden, CO. But they still went to the River Lodge RV Park in the winter for the next few years. Mary Lee especially enjoyed the Labor Day Weekends in Walden because her kids, grandkids, great grandkids and other family friends came up to stay for a couple of days, cutting and splitting firewood for them to have over the winter. There was much fun, food and laughter on those weekends!
Along with her children named above, she leaves behind six grandchildren, Joshua (Corinne) Fisketjon, Matthew (Sarah) Fisketjon, Michael Brossman, Andy Frost, Adrienne (Steve) Sandoval, Daniel (Tara) Brossman, and 11 great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her husband Ronnie, daughter Jeannie, sisters, Ruthie and Doris, brother Don, and one grandson, Jesse Frost (Amber).
Memorial services will be held at Carroll-Lewellen Funeral Home on Friday, January 17th 2020 at 11:00 am. Reception will be immediately following at the Las Palmeras Restaurant. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her name to the Highland Lake Pioneer Cemetery, where she will be laid to rest. Checks can be made out to Historic Highland Lake and mailed to Allen Brossman, 14798 N 115th Street Longmont, Co 80504. Or online at
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