Obituary for Brent Reyburn (1939-2021) – Richmond, RI

Beloved cat Bella. She was born on February 11, 1939 in Cincinnati, Ohio, to the late John B. and Emily Brent (Laffoon) Randolph.

After a stint at home with young daughters, Brent ventured into the business and co-owned The Creative Touch, a craft store in Niantic, with a dear family friend for 11 years. Together they taught many craft classes and shared their expertise with the community. When the business closed, she worked at the Filenes Department Store, Pilot’s Point Marina, and Wickford Cove Marina many years later, which eventually took her to Rhode Island. After retiring from the marina, Brent worked at the Roger Williams Zoo and then the Rhode Island Welcome Center in Richmond, RI, two jobs that she really enjoyed.

Brent loved to travel and was fortunate to have some wonderful trips with a valued lifelong friend and travel companion from Ohio. When she lived in Connecticut, she enjoyed spending summer days at Pequot Point Beach in New London and skiing at Okemo Mountain, Vermont, where she had a home. When she stopped skiing, she spent many Thanksgiving with a great group of friends at the Vermont home. She was a member and former regent of the Phebe Greene Ward Chapter of the Rhode Island Daughters of the American Revolution (RIDAR). Most recently, Brent sewed over 600 masks for the chapter to donate to those in need when COVID struck, and then sewed specially for friends and family. She has also been very involved with the Richmond Senior Center and has made many friends there over the years. But her greatest joy was spending time with her daughters, grandchildren, and sons-in-law. She loved being a mother and being a “gamma” and “gabba” as her grandchildren called her. You were the light in her life and she in her life and she will miss you very much.

Brent was a debutante in 1957, graduated from Dobbs Ferry, NY, Masters School in 1957, and graduated from Connecticut College in 1961, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics.

Brent leaves behind daughters Emily “Mimi” Blay and husband Alan from Hope Valley, RI, and Lisa Reyburn-Payne and husband Michael from Fork, Md .; and her grandchildren: Emily Blay of New York, NY, and Jennifer Blay of Hope Valley, RI. and Maura and Colin Payne, both of Fork, Md. She was pre-deceased by her ex-husband, James S. Reyburn, with whom she remained friends in later years.

At Brent’s request, there are no office hours and a memorial service will be held later this summer. Instead of flowers, donations can be made to Animal Rescue, RI, an organization that is close to Brent’s heart. For online condolences, visit:

Published by The Day on January 1, 2022.

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