MYRTLE BEACH — A neighbor and professional associates of Dr. Franchesca Brown remember her as a role model for the Myrtle Beach community where she grew up and a physician who liked all her co-workers and wanted to expand medical practices and procedures.
She was really into helping people, said Fred Michael, assistant director of the Brunswick County Health (N.C.) Department, where Brown worked as a pediatrician three years ago.
Browns body was found Wednesday in a wooded area near the Hawthorne Suites in Kansas City, Kan., where she was attending a medical conference. She had been expected home in Myrtle Beach Sept. 8, and when she didnt arrive, her family contacted police.
She was last seen with a man at a Sept. 3 social gathering for the conference.
John Meredith Hodges, thought to have had an off-and-on relationship with Brown, is being extradited from Colombia on a federal fugitive warrant for the first-degree murder of Brown.
Michael said he recalls conversations with Brown where she wanted to start programs aimed at obese children before national attention was focused on the numbers of significantly overweight children and the problems they faced.
Michael said Brown worked at the Health Department during the day, and at night made calls to Grand Strand hotel rooms where sick children needed a doctors care. Michael said people at the hotels would make appointments through a phone number in Horry County.
That was her niche, he said.
Michael said Brown,39, was a graduate of Myrtle Beach High School and Duke University.
Phillip Herriott, a Hemingway Street neighbor of the Brown family for more than 30 years, said he watched Brown grow up and never recalled her getting into any trouble at all. He said she was active in Sandy Grove Missionary Baptist Church, where her father was a deacon.
She was a role model for the community, Herriott said, someone that others could look up to.
Before she worked in Brunswick County, she was at the Knox Pediatric Clinic in Wilmington, N.C., for a few months in late 2004.
Practice manager Margie Nance remembers Brown as a very nice person, who was friendly with staff members as well as other physicians. Nance said she recalled cookouts and singing at Browns home.
Michael said the Brown moved to Brunswick Novant Medical Center after she left the Health Department, and he believed she then worked for a practice in Horry County.
It couldnt be determined Tuesday morning where Brown worked just before her death.
Contact STEVE JONES at 444-1765.