Nancy Brower
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Obituary of Nancy T. Brower

The wind has changed direction, and like her much loved Mary Poppins, Nancy Tasman “Taz” Brower has left us. She died peacefully on March 25, 2024 at age 95, with her family around her. 

Taz was born January 31,1929 in Lansing MI and grew up with her loving and devoted parents Eric and Helen Tasman in South Orange, NJ. Taz loved spending time with her wonderful father who called her “Pal.” He taught her to ride a bike, play tennis, and roller skate, and together they loved to watch baseball and football games. Such was their relationship that she took on her dad’s nickname–”Taz” which she used for the rest of her life.  Calling her Nancy was a tip off that you were either a telemarketer or that you wanted to irk her. While her Mother proclaimed Taz’s sister “practically perfect in every way,” and that Taz “would never be a lady,” she forged a wonderful bond with her Dad over their mutual love of sports. After graduating from Miss Beard’s School in 1947 as the “Athenian” sports captain, she went to Vassar, barely graduating in 1951. “I think I loved playing bridge more than studying,” she often remarked. Double dates with various Princeton men paid off, and she finally settled on Bailey Brower Jr of Chatham, NJ. Though she never converted him to skiing, he fashioned her into an avid Princeton football fan. Together they never missed 70 years of Yale-Princeton games, where she was never shy about loudly offering her analyses of the coach’s play-calling. Yet she always included a supportive  “Go Tigers!”

Taz’s “first child” was the Noe Pond Club which she and Bailey established in 1955. Taz loved nothing more than being at Noe, teaching swimming and lifesaving, and creating programs and memories for so many families over the years. She invented the “emblem system” with badges that showed the level of swimming each child had accomplished. Proudly wearing your Gold Fish gave you access to the “deep end” and let the lifeguards know where you belonged. Taz led the development of superb swimming, diving and tennis teams, first at Noe, and then at Copper Springs and Clover Hill. Her most unique creation was the annual “Watershow,” a musical she narrated complete with scenery on the dock and costumes able to be swum in without drowning! Some of her favorite people were the young men and women on the staff, many of whom will never forget Taz, Lake Wallenpaupack, water skiing, and raucous games of touch football.

Taz showered her love and support on her four daughters, six granddaughters, and one grandson. She loved decorating for the holidays, especially Christmas. Taz and Bailey’s nine-foot Christmas trees were legendary as were the evenings of caroling in the neighborhood followed by a hilarious “Yankee Swap.” Many a burned Christmas dinner resulted in the fire department showing up, much to the delight of her grandson. When a fireman exclaimed, “Oh no, Taz, not again!” She offered him cookies and the day was saved. One of Taz’s essential parental beliefs was that the family that played Wales Tales together stayed together, and many games were played around the Brower family room table. Sons-in-law were inaugurated into this tradition, and though she loved them dearly too, Taz would never ever take it easy on them.

In addition to running Noe Pond, Taz co-founded and starred in many shows as part of the Morristown Marionette Players for nearly 45 years, relishing her roles as heroes, witches, wizards, or really any part that involved a good costume. Throughout her life she volunteered at the Red Cross and Junior League, served as an officer of the National Recreation and Swimming Association as well as the Town And Country Association and NJ Junior Tennis Association, and held various leadership positions at Morristown-Beard School, serving as a Trustee, President of the Alumni Association and more. Taz was ahead of her time, empowering girls through her coaching and directing of school plays at the Peck School, and she was instrumental in bringing girls lacrosse to the Morris County area. She inspired her offspring to live lives full of sports and theater. Taz played a mean game of field hockey well into her 40s, and cheered on the athletic and artistic exploits of her daughters and granddaughters. 

Taz loved sharing a good laugh, cruising in her red convertible, making up silly lyrics to well-known songs to celebrate a milestone, or beating anyone in a game of cards. Her spirit was indomitable, and she will be missed by the many who knew and loved her, including her wonderful caretakers Lucy and Karen. Taz was predeceased by her opinionated but much loved Bailey, and is survived by her daughters and their spouses– who will gladly toast to Taz with anyone: Kate Solisti and Marcus Kurek, Kris and Kurt Schulte, Kim and Chuck Barton, Karin Brower Corbett, as well as assorted granddaughters, grandsons-in-law, and one grandson.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Morristown-Beard School which was a big part of her life for many years. (The Morristown-Beard School, 70 Whippany Road, Morristown, NJ 07960)

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