Brenda G. Crowe, 65, of Kansas City, MO, died peacefully on May 10, 2018 after a brief illness. Born in Great Bend, Kansas on November 18, 1952 to Johnnie and Marie (Griffith) Crowe, Brenda moved to Kansas City in 1975 after her studies at Kansas State University.
Vivacious and always a music lover, she soon became a familiar face in the city’s lively arts community, and for many years hosted her legendary Jewelled Crawdad Ball gatherings with live music in the “peach orchard” at her longtime home in Westport. One year she helped create a flamboyantly hilarious float for Kansas City’s St. Patrick’s Day parade, and she founded a “krewe” excursion to New Orleans that has continued to be a presence at that city’s Jazz & Heritage Festival for over 30 years. Brenda was a highly intelligent, witty, vibrant person who was the imaginative social director of many great adventures for her friends over the years – but she also always found time to do good for others, including reading to the blind at UMKC. Her social conscience and her kindness and generosity were boundless, and her loyalty to those she loved was fierce. There was always room at Brenda’s home (maybe even on the couch) and in her heart for one more friend.
After many years working at MARC and at Rose Brooks Center, Brenda spent over two decades as Box Office Manager for the Kansas City Ballet. She was deeply devoted to the organization and cherished her close friendship with the late artistic director Todd Bolender, who took a personal interest in Brenda and her young son Tyler. A staunch advocate for the Ballet’s subscribers and supporters, Brenda was beloved by them.
But the epicenter of her world was Tyler, who grew up within the KC Ballet, taking classes and helping in the box office. Brenda took tremendous pride in his scholastic success and his great achievements in competitive swimming and coaching; over the years that Tyler was active in the Kansas City area, she never missed a swim meet. She found immense reward in motherhood, and the greatest joy of her life was seeing Tyler graduate from law school at the University of Oklahoma and begin his law practice last year in the state where their family’s Cherokee heritage originated.
Brenda is survived by her son, Tyler D. Crowe, Esq. of Norman, Oklahoma; her sister Lovella Mullen of Salina, Kansas; numerous nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, grand-nephews, and cousins. She was predeceased by her parents, her brother Johnnie Douglas Crowe, Jr., and her sister Peggy Crowe.
A celebration of Brenda’s life will take place on Saturday, June 2nd from 2-4pm at the Kansas City Ballet’s Todd Bolender Center at 500 Pershing Road, KCMO. The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Kansas City Ballet, with all gifts going to the Todd Bolender Scholarship Fund.