Janet Layman Brown was born July 26, 1934 in Delta, CO to John William and Glenna C. (Poe) Layman. She passed from this life to be reunited with her husband, Belmear on Friday, November 27, 2020.
Janet and her parents moved to Cortez in 1938, opening up the Main Street business of Layman Hardware. She grew up helping in the store, as well as enjoying the many activities of the kids of that day. Janet was an excellent student and was an accomplished pianist. She graduated from Cortez High School in 1952.
While in her freshman year at CU, Janet met the man that would become the love of her life, her best friend, and her biggest supporter. Janet married Belmear D. Brown, a Mancos native, on May 14, 1954 in Raton, NM. They made a strong bond and lasting marriage of 46 years until Belmear’s death in 2001.
Janet was a bright, determined and hard-working woman. She found employment in 1969 with a local insurance agency as their billing and accounting clerk. Shortly thereafter she found herself as their prime agent. Janet was informed by the large underwriting company which held all of the agency’s policies that they were going to cancel their contract with the agency. Their reason....” they had never had a woman principal in one of their agencies”. Asking for a year to prove herself, Janet studied on her own to pass all of her insurance licensing exams, including her broker’s license. Within three months from the initial notification, the underwriting company formally welcomed her as an agency principal. Janet made a career at Cortez Insurance Agency.
A very quiet and independent woman, Janet enjoyed gardening. The solitude of her gardens and the resulting beauty soothed her soul. She loved long walks in the canyon beside her house, now known as Carpenter Reserve. Janet was an excellent cook. In her later years she was a voracious reader...there was no need of a tv for her when she had her books. Most of all, Janet loved her life as partner to her husband. They were a complete unit, each taking turn in caring for the other when they were in need.
Surviving Janet are her two children, Beverlee Ertel and Keenan Ertel (her favorite son-in-law!) of Cortez, and Hazen Brown and Cindy Mueller of Cortez and Granbury, TX; two grandchildren, Kinsey Ertel and Donnie Tanner of Cortez, and Tyson Ertel and Brittanie Hager of Grand Junction, CO; three great grandchildren, Kamdynn Hager, Keagan Ertel Moralez, and Kaden Huff; her brother-in-law, Morrison and Karla Brown; and numerous nephews and nieces. Janet was preceded in death by her parents; and her husband, Belmear.
Memorial contributions can be made in Janet’s name to Cortez Library, 202 N. Park St., Cortez, CO 81321 or Cortez Animal Shelter, 2719 E. Main St., Cortez, CO 81321.