Mildred Lucile Brand

June 16, 1921 - January 24, 2021

Click here to sign the guest book


Friday, January 29, 12:00 PM
Hudson United Brethren Church


Mildred Lucile Brand, 99, of Fort Wayne died Sunday, January 24, 2021, at the Towne House Retirement Community in Fort Wayne.

She was born June 16, 1921, in Fort Wayne to Ancil D. and Lucile (Libey) Buss.

Mrs. Brand was a farmer’s wife, raising seven children. In 1958, she began her entrepreneurial spirit by opening Country Kitchen Restaurant on State Road 327 north of Corunna. She was also the founder of the Country Kitchen in Fort Wayne, a baking and candy supply business, that has since gone through three generations of family ownership. She worked there for 39 years, retiring in 1985.

Mildred was a Hall of Fame member and Past President of the International Cake Exploration Society. She, along with her husband, helped encourage many area businesses to get started. She was also involved with the Widow-to-Widow support group, Christian Women’s Association, and the Fort Wayne Rescue Mission.

Surviving are five sons, Jerry (Mary Lee) Brand of Austin, Texas, Joe (Nancy) Brand of Peachtree Corners, Georgia, Bill (Peg) Brand of Auburn, Orlie (Kathe) Brand of Fort Wayne, and Neal (Shari) Brand of Denton, Texas; two daughters, Vi Whittington of Huntertown and Cathy (Tim) Beere of Fort Wayne; an honorary son, Quintin (Juliet) Yao of Henderson, Nevada; 24 grandchildren; 44 great-grandchildren, five great-great-grandchildren; and a sister, Ruth Holden of Nappanee.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Wilbur Wayne Brand; a son-in-law, Edwin Whittington; a sister, Catherine Schmidt; a brother, Charles Buss; and family friend, Alice Yao.

Funeral services for immediate family will be Friday, January 29, 2021, at 12 p.m. at the Hudson United Brethren Church in Hudson with Chaplain Douglas Vogel and Pastor Craig Burkholder officiating. Private burial will be prior to the service at Fairfield Cemetery.

Per the Governor, face masks are required.

Mildred’s funeral service on Friday will live stream on the Young Family Funeral Home Facebook page beginning at 12 p.m.

A Celebration of Life service is being planned to coincide with Mildred’s 100th birthday in June. The date and time of that service will be announced later.

Preferred memorials may be directed to The Towne House Chapel, 2209 St. Joe Center Road, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 46825.

Young Family Funeral Home, Hudson-Ashley Chapel, 612 North Main Street, Hudson is assisting the family with arrangements.

Share memories and condolences at

Guest Book

Jane Lengacher
February 5th, 2021 6:40pm
Fort Wayne

My teacher, my mentor and my friend. There are no words to describe this beautiful lady. She taught me everything I know about candy and confections and was the reason I spent many years teaching, catering and cooking. A very memorable event was when she took her niece Sue, and me to New York City to a food show many years ago. My first trip on an airplane and my first glimpse of the big city. What an amazing woman. She will be missed by many, but she leaves memories to warm many hearts. Vi, Kathy, Orlie and the rest of the family have my deepest sympathy. God Bless!

Belinda Plank
February 2nd, 2021 7:29pm

I am so sorry to all the family members of Mildred's family and especially Cathy & Tim. Mildred was such a beautiful, talented, kind, and very special woman who I am grateful to have known and shared some special times with. My heart and prayers are will all of you, and I am sending lots of peace and love, Belinda Plank

Pam Owens
February 1st, 2021 2:07pm
Charlotte, NC

Sincere condolences to all. What a legacy Mildred leaves behind! There were those of us that learned from her cake decorating and candy making skills. And there were those guiding life lessons that were passed down throgh the family. What a wonderful teacher to all! She and Wilbur will live on through their many friends and family. A life well lived.

Neil and Janet Betz
February 1st, 2021 1:38am
Ragland, Alabama

Debbie (Bowman) Teson
January 30th, 2021 10:11pm
O Fallon, Missouri

Cakes, candy, and treats that were sweet. Aunt Mildred's 99 years here were complete. She left a great legacy and family of love, We can feel her smiling humbly down from above. Now in heaven, I know the angels she did meet. (She was the kind of person we all strive to be like and may you all find comfort and strength in the memories you cherish and share.)

Cindy Sheckler
January 30th, 2021 2:45am
Fort Wayne

My deepest condolences to all the family of Mildred Brand. She was a lovely lady.

Cathy (Dick) Egler
January 30th, 2021 12:03am
Cape Coral, Florida

Aunt Mildred and Uncle Wilbur helped to shape my life. I started working for them at Country Kitchen on Wells Street when I was 10 years old. Through example I learned a strong work ethic. Aunt Mildred was always so prim and proper; her legs crossed at the ankle...and always with a kind, sweet, and gentle smile. She was an amazing and very talented woman. My condolences go to the family.

Greg & Vicki Holden
January 29th, 2021 5:01pm

She was precious! How blessed you were to have you as your mother! 💕

Ruth Brand Farrell
January 29th, 2021 3:15pm
Pittsburgh, PA

We all loved to see Aunt Mildred! As a child, I remember Uncle Wilbur being bigger-than-life and the joker and Aunt Mildred being super attentive, and not only remembering my name, but asking something about me that showed she remembered things about me and wanted to know more. At Brands' Christmases she made her way around the room checking in with everyone one-by-one. What an amazing gift of caring she strengthened over the years. We will miss her and hope to embody her caring, generous spirit.

Angela Shook
January 29th, 2021 11:07am
Lawrenceville, GA

My thoughts and prayers are with the Brand family. Mrs. Brand's candy books are favorites. So very sorry for your loss. My condolences to all of her family. Angela. (Cake Art)

Geri (Sanders) Morrical
January 29th, 2021 7:08am
Portland, Indiana

Mildred (and the whole Brand family) is remembered with smiles, tears, laughter, and gratitude. She always made one feel special and very welcome, whether at a wedding, barnyard volleyball game or Bible quiz team practice, or MULTI-family Rook party. When I was in high school, I felt honored and learned so much when asked to help with some Country Kitchen Catering events......about much more than the catering business, with her encouragement and kind example.. Thank you, Mildred. We celebrate your reunion with Jesus and Wilbur.

Bob McMillan
January 29th, 2021 12:58am
Des Allemands

Mildred, was loved by many.

Lee and Renee Stoy
January 29th, 2021 12:23am

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Brand family. May God give you peace and comfort at this time.

Oleta Edwards
January 28th, 2021 11:17pm
Danville, Missouri

To all of Mildred's family, I send my admiration of her, your father and all of you who have continued their Company, their kindness and their sharing. I was so honored when ICES chose me in 2008 to receive the Wilbur Brand award.

Nick Martinelli
January 28th, 2021 9:11pm

What words can one use to acknowledge this dear friend? Proverbs 31:10 is a start." Who can find a virtuos woman? For her price is far above rubies"Or verse 25, " Strength and honor are her clothiong, and she shall rejoice in her time." Or verse 25," Her children ( and friends) rise up,and call her blessed." Mildred Brand leaves a godly legacy of family. She and her husband Wilbur, werre major contributing factors in the succes of my CAKE ART company in the metro Atlanta, Ga. area. rest in peace dear friend. Nick Martinelli

Elizabeth Wegmann
January 28th, 2021 8:36pm

I am so very sorry. You will be in my prayers. I am so very sorry.

Paul Leichty
January 28th, 2021 8:34pm
Williamsport, Pennsylvania

I remember Mildred well from my time as pastor of First Mennonite Church in the mid-1990s. She was a wonderful person and lived a long full life. Remembering her kindness as well as that of Orlie who gave my son some special work at Country Kitchen.

Betty and Lamar Yoder
January 28th, 2021 7:18pm
Fort Wayne

Remembering Mildred's family with deepest sympathy.

Alan and Jackie Housman Cadkin
January 28th, 2021 5:35pm
Fort Myers FL

Our hearts go out to the families of Mildred Brand. She was a lovely lady, and an early walking friend of my mother’s (another Mildred). We are blessed to have kept our mothers for so long. Our sincere sympathies to all who loved her.

Bruce Grogg
January 28th, 2021 4:07pm
Manhattan, KS

I mourn with you at the passing of your mother. I celebrate with as you as you rermember her and the life she lived so well She will be missed and fondly remembered as always pleasant, always kind, and very industrious.

Ed Fox
January 28th, 2021 3:49pm
Fort Wayne

I am sorry to hear of this. Mildred was such a great woman. I worked for her and Wlibur at Country Kitchen I remember when I would come in to go to the basement to print labels Mildred always greeted me with her sweet smile. May Mildred rest along with Wilbur in the arms of our loving Lord. Amen

Karan Tubbs
January 28th, 2021 5:31am
Pleasant Lake IN.

My Sympathy to all the family. I have great memories of this lady. As my grandmother was a Libey we were distant relatives. For the last several Salem Alumnis that she attended she'd come up to me and say...I bet you don't know who I am. I'd say oh yes I do Mildred and then I'd get a big hug. I miss that hug and that visit. She was a very special lady. My heart goes out to all. Karan Tubbs. My grandmother was Edna Libey Tubbs.

Christan Parker
January 28th, 2021 2:02am
Boise Idaho

Sharing your sadness at the passing of a great Christian lady

Eleanor (Betz) Hess
January 28th, 2021 1:43am
Freedom Maine

My Dad, Ebon Betz, had the best family and so by default I too had the best set of aunts and uncles and cousins that anyone could ask for. Wilbur and Mildred were a part of our annual trips to the Betz family reunion for which I'm forever thankful. I remember a shared dinner table on the hog farm and swimming at Lake James with Aunt Alice and all of Wilbur and Mildred's family and commemorated in our home movies. And I bet Cathy remembers the June 1975 car drive to Maryland with the AC set on cold to preserve my wedding cake that Mildred made! And you know that was the most beautiful and delicious wedding cake ever. The little toy "dunking bird" that Wilbur brought to my parents way back when I was probably 6 years old is now in my possession and traveled with me to the Marshalls where I lived and taught for 4 years and that bird still graces my dining room table and still dunks. Wilbur and Mildred are part of the fabric of my life and the foundation of my family love for which I'm forever grateful. My thoughts and prayers go to all who were blessed by Mildred's joy. Eleanor (Betz) Hess

Peter Janzen
January 28th, 2021 1:40am
New Haven In

My deepest condolences to the family of Mildred Brand. She was a women of strong Christian conviction and had an extremely generous spirit. I will remember her talent as a cake maker extraordinaire! When First Mennonite Church in Fort Wayne celebrated birthdays and other special occasions, Mildred would come with her cake and candy creations. I consider her gift of hospitality and teaching many others her kitchen secrets will likely be a legacy that will continue for generations to come.

Ruth Ann Witt
January 28th, 2021 12:58am
Ashley, IN

Sorry to hear of Mildred's passing. It would have been nice if she could have made it to the 100 mark. But God had other plans for her. Maybe He needed her to help Wilbur with one of his projects : ) She was a dear, sweet lady and I'm surer she had earned an extra jewel in her crown for raising such a fine family. Blessings to you all.

Randall Deetz
January 28th, 2021 12:34am

Sorry to hear about your loss... Mildred and the entire Brand family were GREAT neighbors and a real treasures to know again condolences on your loss.

Theresa Oman
January 27th, 2021 11:24pm
Ft. Wayne

I will always cherish the time spent with Mildred driving back and forth to ICES meetings. The stories she would tell and the love she had for her children will always be a constant reminder of the Godly woman she was. I loved it when she came into the store because she always had a huge smile and a big hug for me. Love you Mildred!

Jeni, John, Chloe and Cora Grissom
January 27th, 2021 11:11pm
Aubrey, TX

Grandma Brand became by Grandma when I was 5. 40 years ago. She always treated me as one of her own and welcomed me as part of the family. She had such a sense of peace and grace about caring and welcoming. It was an honor to know her. Our heartfelt condolences to all family and friends that knew her and loved her.

Linda Phillips Colbart
January 27th, 2021 10:55pm
Auburn, In

What a wonderful lady I feel so lucky to have had in my life for many years. My first job was as a waiter for the little Country Kitchen Restaurant in Corunna and then eventually I went on to have my own cake shop for 32 years in Auburn . Her inspiration for doing cakes seemed to rub off on me and I was blessed to be able to learn things from the best. We were neighbors when her kids and my sisters and I were growing up and we have such great memories of our neighborhood parties. Some were planned in the spur of the moment but all were great. I pray for peace for the family at this time and going forward. What a wonderful legacy and much love to the family.

Doneta Brenneman Oswalt
January 27th, 2021 10:54pm
Auburn, In

My sympathy and love the family of this lovely lady I have known my entire life.

Brooke Brand
January 27th, 2021 9:46pm

Sitting at lunch many years ago, Grandma Millie and I had a conversation about giving. We talked about how to decide whether or not someone (specifically on the street, who might spend the money on something other than what we would wish for them) was worthy of being given to. Grandma smiled and sweetly said in her quiet and humble voice "I figure what I do with my money is between me and God, and what they do with it is between them and God." She then quickly admitted that she hadn't come up with that saying, but she had carried it with her her since hearing it from someone else. And since that conversation, I have, too. About 19 years ago, I was dating Dan, and she invited me to come visit and stay with her for a night at her house. Just me and her. She taught me how to temper chocolate, make marshmallows from scratch, and she treated me like her own granddaughter even though Dan and I weren't even engaged. That evening, I looked through old photo albums with her. We talked about her life, her kids, living on the farm, starting the business with Wilbur, and so much more. We actually cried together through a few stories. Through it all, my biggest take-away was that she was a genuinely grateful and extremely humble person who would never judge another. She was a woman who found joy in simple moments, loved her family, and was an inspiration to many. She was actually quite famous in the cake and candy industry, having written several books and having taught hundreds (thousands?) of classes, then starting a successful well-known business, but you'd never know that from talking to her. I don't think she cared much about legacy in the "famous" or "newspaper headline" sense, only that she left lots of joy and love in the world. She shaped all of us in her 99 years, and I am so grateful for having known her. Rest easy, Grandma Millie. And give Wilbur a hug from all of us.