Cover photo for Brenda Ann Crews's Obituary
Brenda Ann Crews Profile Photo
1949 Brenda 2022

Brenda Ann Crews

December 22, 1949 — January 18, 2022


BRENDA ANN CAMPBELL CREWS, aged 72 years, entered eternal life on January 18, 2022. Her spirit lives on in her two children, four grandchildren, and extended family of relations and friends from every walk of life. She was a bright light in this world and will be deeply missed.

Brenda was born in Nashville, Tennessee, to Clarence Hardin & Eula Ann Hardison Campbell on December 22, 1949, and raised in West Nashville. At Cohn High School, Brenda was a basketball player, a class valedictorian, and an infectious spirit. She later chased her dreams of a career in biochemistry at Vanderbilt University, where she was awarded her BA in biology in 1971.

Brenda accepted a job with Vanderbilt Medical School, where she studied and worked for 51 years. There, she realized her lifelong love of scientific research. She was a superb experimentalist who planned lab work carefully and conducted it meticulously, working on projects such as protein purification, enzyme assays, cell imaging, signal transduction, in vivo pharmacology, and more. While at Vanderbilt, she published 105 papers. Brenda’s colleagues knew her as a kind and caring person; she loved her home family and, just so, she loved her lab family.

Brenda was a principled woman who always sought to better herself and her community, defended those she loved, and held fast to her beliefs. She was a devoted Christian prayer warrior and a member of both Fourth Avenue Church of Christ and Our Safe Harbor Church. She openly shared the wisdom of her life experiences, guided others, and offered tireless support.

Brenda was a kind and loving mother, determined to provide for her family.  Her family meant more to her than anything else in the world; she said so often, and with pride. She is survived by her sister Anita Thornton, her loving friend Amit Kalgutkar, her daughter Heather Carmichael, her son Jonathan Crews and wife Helen, and her grandchildren Lillian, Catherine, Julia, and Rebecca.

We honor Brenda’s devotion to her multi-cultural family and worldwide friends, and we, with them, will remember her always. We are blessed by kind wishes and prayers from everyone fortunate to have known her.

Services will be held at Mount Hope Cemetery in Franklin, Tennessee on February 6, 2022, at 1:30 p.m.  A life celebration will follow at Temple Hills Country Club.

In lieu of flowers, the family will be grateful for donations to the Stanley Cohen Innovation Fund at Vanderbilt University, facilitated here . For those who prefer to send flowers, they will be received at Williamson Memorial Funeral Home, 3009 Columbia Avenue, Franklin, Tennessee 37064.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Brenda Ann Crews, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Graveside Service

Sunday, February 6, 2022

Starts at 1:30pm (Eastern time)

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