Ann Capolino Brewer was a natural leader known for her relentless efforts to better her community. She was especially known for her work on behalf of those suffering from cystic fibrosis, and was a champion of Georgia farmers as one of the first organizers of the organic food movement.
Her friends and family remembered her dedication with fondness in the wake of her passing Friday at the age of 85.
“She was my friend and a wonderful lady who was dedicated in everything she did,” said Frank Turner.
“Anything she did, she did 100 percent,” his wife, Kay, said.
“She’s always been an organizer,” a family source recalled. “Anne liked to be busy; she really liked to be busy.”
Ann met many people from all walks of life while pursuing various projects, and excelled at organizing and connecting people.
“She loved meeting people and getting people together, and now all the farmers are friends with all the top chefs!” the family source said.
Ann Capolino was born August 20, 1929 in Philadelphia Pennsylvania. She was called to community service early, and began volunteering with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation where she would soon become its first full-time employee. It was at a foundation fundraiser in Atlanta that she met her husband Oby T. Brewer.
In 1972, they bought the historic Mt. Pleasant home in the Brickstore Community of Newton County. The family source recalls that when the couple first bought the house, it was in such bad shape there were “cows in the front hallway.”
Ann made the 1830’s home one of her most beloved projects, and soon restored it to its former glory. It was through her work on the home that she became involved with the local community through the Church of the Good Shepard, the Newton County Historical Society, the Garden Club and other groups. Her research unearthed a rich history associated with the house, which was used as a Union campground during the Civil War. Eventually, she turned the historic home into a Christmas tree farm.
Through the Georgia Organics organization, Brewer helped found the Morningside Farmers Market almost 20 years ago.
According to a tribute posted on the Morningside Farmers Market’s Facebook wall, Brewer was with the Georgia Grown Cooperative when Gunter Seeger, one of Atlanta’s most noted chefs, asked her to help develop a farmer’s market. With the help of Cynthia Hizer of the AJC, Brewer modeled the market off of those found in California to become one of the first certified organic markets in the country.
Brewer’s tenacity helped her to overcome multiple obstacles, including a serious car accident in the early 2000’s which left her gravely injured.
“The doctors told her she wasn’t going to walk, and Ann wouldn’t have that, so--she walked! When she made her mind up about something, she got it,” said the family source.
Her recovery was aided by her rescue dog, Oliver, who had been abused as a puppy and was also not expected to walk.
“You can bet Oliver can walk; he can run and he can jump too!” said the source.
Brewer was preceded in death by her husband, Oby T. Brewer, who passed away in 1989.Her family has requested that in lieu of flowers, contributions be made to the Church of the Good Shepard, located at 4140 Clark Street, Covington 30014.
Oliver, Brewer’s 10-year-old mixed-breed canine companion, is now in need of a loving home. Seriously interested parties should e-mail The News at firstname.lastname@example.org with “Oliver” in the subject line.