Brian P Russell

(Jan 25, 1958 to Dec 5, 2009)

Brian P. Russell, 51, of Swedesboro, NJ died Saturday December 5, 2009 at his home after a courageous battle with cancer. Brian was born January 25, 1958 in Wakefield, RI. Brian was a graduate of The University of Rhode Island where he received a B.S. in Pharmacy and a MBA in Healthcare Administration.rnrnBrian, considered a “czar” in his field, served 28 years in the medical education industry, most recently as Director of Medical Education at Roche Laboratories, Inc. From 1991 to 2006 Brian served in various capacities at Vox Medica, Inc. and its subsidiaries including – Executive V.P. and Principal Vox Medica, Inc., President and Chief Compliance Officer of Institute for Continuing Healthcare Education, Inc., and President CoMed Communications, Inc.rnrnHis career also included executive positions at the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science, America Druggist Magazine, and the University of Rhode Island College of Pharmacy.rnrnBrian enjoyed spending holidays and summer vacations with his family, downhill skiing, scuba diving and travel.rnrnBrian was best known for his generosity, selflessness, and sense of humor and was a mentor to many colleagues and students throughout his career.rnrnHe is survived by his parents, Paul D. and Jean Yost Russell of Wakefield RI; his brother, Carl Russell, and his wife, Krista, of Newport RI, his sister, Anne K. Cabral, and her husband, Stephen, of Pine Plains, NY; his brother, Stephen Russell, and his wife, Ellen, of Wakefield, RI; and seven nieces and nephews.rnrnCome celebrate his 51 years Tuesday Dec. 8 from 6 to 8 pm at Daley Life Celebration Studio, Swedesboro.rnrnMass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Saturday 10:00 St. Francis of Assisi Church, Wakefield RI. Viewing Friday Dec. 11 5 to 8 p.m. at Avery – Storti Funeral Home, 88 Columbia St., Wakefield, RI.rnrnDonations in lieu of flowers to the Brian P. Russell Foundation, URI Foundation, P.O. Box 1700, Kingston, RI 02881 will be appreciated.rnrn

62 thoughts on “Brian P Russell

  1. Heidi J. Hayman Katz

    To Brian’s Immediate Family–rnHaving known Brian for more than 25 years, beginning with having Brian as a teacher, mentor and friend during my 4th/5th yrs of pharmacy school at URI, followed by reconnecting as peers several years later, I am at a an even greater loss for words now than I was this morning when speaking with Anne. My affection, admiration, respect for Brian in all of the roles that he has played in my life are only surpassed by the unbelievable knowledge that I will no longer get that big hug and kiss hello from that wonderful man with the twinkling blue eyes and that infectious and completely unique and UNFORGETABLE giggle/laugh that was his and his alone….rnrnBrian always spoke of how much he loved his immediate family and his adored nieces and nephews. This was followed by his passion for life and his hometown of Wakefield, RI, URI and the fun and beaches of RI and his multitude of friends, or “extended family”, gathered from both his personal and professional lives.rnrnThank you so much for sharing him with all of us over the years and for the all encompassing photo montage–he was loved deeply and will be greatly missed by so many people whose lives he has touched in so many ways, shapes and forms.rnrnI hope that you will gain some comfort in all of the special memories that will be shared with you from others along with the thoughts, love and prayers that I, and many others, are sending your way.rnrnWith kind and warmest regards,rnrnHeidi J. Hayman Katz, RPHrnURI School of Pharmacy Class of 1984rnMedical Education Colleague and FriendrnLivingston, NJrnrnrnrnrn and reminiscing about our memories of those days as well as making new ones from that point forward,

  2. Alana Brody

    I am so very sorry for your loss. Brian was a beautiful person- inside and out. He fought his disease with optimism and dignity. His light will be missed by many. Alana Brody

  3. Ron Woodmansee

    What a great way to celebrate Brian’s life. Except for the one with Carl’s mustache (Carl,never again on that one), those pics were awesome, and a great way to remember him, always with that fun loving and borderline mischievous look. As Carl and I talked about a couple of weeks ago, he had a great life, something we should all remember, and srive to emulate. The way you guys chose to memorialize it was truly great!!

  4. Michael Bioni

    Brian was our neighbor for over 11 years. We grew very close to Brian and shared many special times and events with him. We considered Brian much more than a friend, he added to our lives and made a lasting impression. I will deeply miss Brian.

  5. Walt & Gloria Redmond

    “For years I have indeed been blessed with a constant stream of answered prayers; all of them givers of joy and happiness. The more my prayers were answered, the more I wanted to spread the glorious message of what I had found myself. No longer would I ask God to heal someone’if it were his will’; it is always God’s will to heal. I had complete and absolute faith, and have been able to pass on this faith to thousands of persons who have found release from suffering through it.” (From LET GO AND LET GOD, by Albert Cliffe)rnWe knew Brian as a child and as a teenager growing up in Wakefield R.I. We have been lifelong friends with Brian’s parents. Perhaps that is why it seems so difficult to express our sorrow to them for the loss of their son. Our oldest son is Brians age and they were playmates whenever possible. Let Go And Let God has been a sort of mantra for us for a number of years and that is why we chose the quotation at the beginning of this message. But turning things over to God doesn’t mean that we should then just forget. We must cherish the memories of those that we have lost. It is these memories that keep the ones that we loved alive in our hearts. The heart is love and peace. The perfect dwelling place. Russ & Jean, we share your sorrow and there, tucked away somewhere in a part of our hearts there is a dwelling place for Brian. God Bless You and your family.

  6. Sharon & John Bednar

    Our condolences to his family. We have known Brian since he had moved into our neighborhood. He always had a smile on his face and a kind word to say. One of our fondest memories of Brian is that we would ALWAYS run into him at “our favorite restaurant”.

  7. Yvonne D'Amelio

    I first met Brian in February of 1991 when he started with CoMed Communications. Brian and I were very close business partners for over 15 years and not only did he teach me many things, he made such an impact on my life. He thought of others first and himself last. He will be in thoughts and heart forever.

  8. Maureen Hazen-Fritsky

    I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Brian through Bob & Anne Doyle. Brian was a caring person with great spirit. He will be missed.rnrnMy thoughts and prays are with his family.

  9. Maria Elaina Turse & Athena Lapenna

    We are neighbors of Brians who where honored to know him.. he was a very kind and giving person to all around, and was always happy to be around the children, ours included. we will always remember when we first moved in, a helicopter landed in the field behind our property….we were out looking at the event in our pj’s, coctails in hand (thank god standing in waist high rye) when Brian and his friend appeared coctails in hand..that is when we first met Brian and have thought fondly of him ever since….from our hearts we are deeply saddened by your loss…rnMaria, Athena, Alex, & Athena

  10. Abbe Lynch

    I did not know Brian very long, only during my time at CoMed and the few times I saw him at various medical meetings – but I often think of how fortunate I was to work with him during that time. Always a warm smile and a joke to share, and the Mother Theresa quote seems to be a perfect representation of how he chose to live his life.

  11. Demarie Bioni

    Brian has been a part of our lives for over 11 years. He was a neighbor for all those years – and part of our family from the very first holiday dinner that he spent with us. His charm, humour and boisterous laugh made him an instant hit with my family and from then on we couldn’t imagine not extending an invite to him. Now that I’ve had the pleasure to meet his RI family I see why he fit in so easily with us. Russ, Jeanne, Ann, Zac and Jaclyn – your love, caring, sacrifice and pain that you’ve gone thru in the past few months we’ve known you has been a true testament to how Brianrnlived his life. He truly loved and cared for all friends and was a friend for life. We feel honored to have been able to spend so many wonderful meals and special days with someone who truly understood what family was all about. He had a true appreciation of family and of living a life worth enjoying and I’ll always try to live my life that way in memory of him. We will miss him every day of our lives.

  12. Brenda McNally

    Russell Family,nI am so sorry to hear of Brian’s passing. I hold many childhood memories and escapades close to my heart! We had many good times while you babysat for me Jean, and also many more as adults upon my visits to Philadelphia!nMy thoughts are with you.nBrenda McNally

  13. Gisela Paulsen

    I am very sad to learn about Brian’s passing. I first met Brian in 1991 as a pharmacy student from Sweden. Since then I moved to the US and had the privilege to have Brian as a boss for over 5 years between 1998-2003. But more important, Brian became a dear friend to both me, my husband, our daughter and so many other people. He was a great mentor to so many people in his area of profession, but even more important, he always developed strong personal relationships with everyone he met. He was always an optimistic, inspiring and such a trusted person, and he always made people, and me personally, look at any professional and personal situations with a smile :-) ! I can hear his laughter now…Our thoughts are with you and we are deeply sadden. Gisela, David and Caroline

  14. Victoria Elliott

    Brian was a friend, colleague and fabulous mentor. I have some very fond memories from our time working together at PCPS. I have always appreciated his guidance, friendship and sage advice during and after the time we worked together. While working in the Office of Continuing Education, Brian kept the atmosphere light yet got the most out of every employee. Probably my most fond memories surround our social excursions. He made a sometimes challenging social life at college much more enjoyable. LKS Dinner Dances were always more fun and KY parties a real treat when Brian was around. Just the right amount of fun and humor! Thanks for everything Brian! All my sympathy to your parents, sister Ann and your brothers. Rest in peace.nVicky

  15. Heidi Hayden

    I worked at CoMed Communications where I met Brian. I always remember him as easy going and great person to talk too. He always seemed so sincere in everybody’s well being. I am sad to hear of his passing and our thoughts are with his family. Heidi Hayden

  16. Jon Ukropec

    I am saddened to hear of Brian’s passing. Having known Brian for almost 10yrs, I considered him a friend, colleague, and at times a mentor. I remember how he enjoyed life and will miss him. My sincerest sympathies to his family.

  17. Bonnie Dorrell

    It has been an honor and a priviledge to know Brian. He was gracious and humble. I will miss the twinkle in his eye and his sense of humor. He touched my life deeply with his courage and dignity. I am proud to have been of service to him through CVS.

  18. John Scott

    I had the privilege to work for Brian, at Roche, the last 3 years. We started a week apart on our journey to make Roche Med Ed a department to be proud of. In a short period of time his influence, abilities and great knowledge of Med Ed made a great impact on what we did. Most of all we became good friends. We laughed daily as we worked side by side. He was a true optimist. The Med Ed community and I will miss him greatly.

  19. Mark Geisler

    I first met Brian through my employment at Comed Communications. He was a great leader, mentor, and most of all a friend. Looking forward to seeing many of you Tuesday evening as we celebrate his life together! Brian — We all loved you and will miss you dearly…keep the party going till we all get there!rnrnMarkrn

  20. Susan Dobrowolski

    I am truly saddened to hear of Brian’s passing. Even though we had not spoken for a few years, he was always in my thoughts. I worked with Brian for 20 years – at PCPS when he first came to Philadelphia and then at Comed. He was a great friend and colleague. I will always remember the continuing education trips we took together, Christmas parties at Brian’s house, and numerous other good times. My condolences to all of Brian’s family. Everyone who knew him will miss his spirit. SueD

  21. Debbie Haralambous

    We have fond memories of Brian as a neighbor and friend. His laughter was contagious, his soul was warm, giving and sincere. Our sincere thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends…we hope that his laughter surrounds you always!nnSincerely,nJohn and Debra Haralambous

  22. Debbie (Redmond) Sanspree

    Mr and Mrs RussellrnI so enjoyed the slide show of Brian’s life. Although my memories of him were only to about age 10, it is apparent that he was a FUN personality. I am very sorry for your loss, let his light continue to shine in your hearts and know that he is always with you.

  23. Kim D'Onofrio

    Brian will be missed! He was such an incredible mentor to me. He inspired and encouraged me in so many ways – there wouldn’t be enough room to write everything here. I’m going to miss seeing him walk passed my cube with a cheerful “good morning Kim” EVERY day! I think he was the only one who actually loved chocolate chip cookies more than I did! It was an absolute pleasure to work for him these past 3 years – I will miss him dearly.

  24. Sarah Donelson Trease

    Deepest sympathies to your family. I have such fond memories of Brian. He was a colleague who always had a smile on his face, a great sense of humor and was willing to help out. Even when it wasn’t in his area, he was a great sounding board and helped me to navigate the system to get a solution. I will miss working with Brian. May you find peace and comfort in your memories – Sarah.

  25. Stephen Lewis

    Sincere sympathies to all of Brian’s family and friends. We all miss you so much, Brian! You made us laugh, made us think, encouraged us to share our best qualities, helped us learn and gain perspective on everything from life and work to love and friendships. Each of us is better off having had you touch our lives and continue to live in us.rnrnLove,rnStephen and Brandy Lewis

  26. Dawn Funk Benevento

    I am so sorry for your loss. I worked with Brian at Vox/CoMed. He was a truly wonderful person with an enormous soul who cared immensely. Brian’s positive impact on my life will remain with me always. I?m grateful to have known him. I hope you are able to find peace from your memories which will be in your hearts forever.

  27. Janet Moga

    I met Brian in 2000 in an interview in San Francisco to work for CoMed. First impressions are a tell-tale sign of who a person truly is and sure enough, Brian made a phenomenal first impression. Despite the formality of an interview, Brian made me feel very at ease and I felt immediately comfortable. I went on to get the job and have known Brian ever since. He even came to my wedding in Carmel, CA — what an honor to have him there, knowing he made a special trip. nnBrian was such a wonderful person. So caring, thoughtful but also funny and kind of goofy actually. He really knew how to laugh. I loved that about him. In addition, Brian was a great listener and I really felt that I could always be straightforward and honest with him. In fact, I’m sure he wouldn’t have wanted it any other way! nnI will miss Brian so much. But most importantly, I feel lucky to have known him and to call him a friend. nnWith warmest regards,nJanetnn

  28. Lisa Vicens

    I met Brian through my sister and brother-in-law, Demarie and Michael Bioni. Michael was their neighbor, and he came to be a close friend to my family and to me. I shared many a holiday, birthday party, or barbecue with Brian over the last 11 years, and he is going to be very deeply missed by me and my family. My condolences, prayers, and love are with your family.

  29. Germaine Aprill

    My sincere condolences to Brian’s family. I met Brian only a few years ago when our paths crossed in the medical education area. In a short period of time, we developed a professional friendship that meant a lot to me. His personality was full of life. He was always available to share his time and experiences. I enjoyed our friendship and will truly miss Brian. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Germaine

  30. Maryann "Mares" Orndorff

    I met and worked with Brian in the early years at CoMed. He made you feel at ease in his presence and always made you laugh. When we would travel on meetings together, he would always say, “it figures Mares, you would have to order the fish instead of the filet mignon and try to make me eat healthy”. I can still hear him saying “nightmares” as I would depart the office. Brian, thank you for touching all of our lives in your own very special way. My heart goes out to your family for their incredible loss.

  31. Jocelyn K Polk

    I was so saddened to hear about Brian. I worked with Brian for 6 years at CoMed when we were a company of about 10. Brian was an incredible mentor and taught me the fundamentals of medical marketing — fundamentals that I have relied on as I progressed in my career. I have so many funny stories and memories, especially our many trips to medical meetings. I will never forget his daily tuna sandwiches with pickles and crushed potato chips — to this day, I think of him when one of my family has a tuna sandwich! Brian, thank you for all of your words of wisdom and laughter during my years in Philly, My deepest condolences to Brian’s family.

  32. Sharyn Lee

    In 1995 while working in the homecare industry, I received a call from Brian asking me to participate in a diabetes focus group…this was a first for me, but the beginning of a long-standing friendship and professional relationship. From our roots in New England and love of Newport (and Jazz) to our shared joys of being teachers and mentors, I will miss him. Brian’s legacy is his impact in medical education, and the importance of our work in patient care. An astute business man and clinician, almost everyone in our industry has a ” 6 degrees of separation” link to Brian! rnHe will be in my thoughts, and his family in my prayers throughout the year.rnrnSharyn Lee

  33. Sarah Beck Smith

    My prayers and love are with Brian and his family. Brian was my first “Big Boss” out of college, and some of my most hilarious, laugh-till-you-cry moments have been spent with him. Brian was full of life and his laughter and full spirit were contagious. He made me feel like part of the CoMed family the moment I joined the company, and he taught me that work IS about working hard, but it’s also about having lots of fun along the way. What a kind, loving man. Even though I had lost touch with him through the years (I’ve since moved to Montana), all memories of him bring a huge smile to my face. As I’ve heard so many times over the past two days, he was indeed the Life of the Party.rnrnMay you find peace and strength in one another, and know that an entire community prays and mourns with you.rnrnLove,rnrnSarah

  34. Patty Butler

    I was fortunate to have had the opportunity to work for Brian while at CoMed. His door was always open and he was always helpful, approachable, and kind. I will miss his smile and laugh, and am grateful that our paths crossed. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. Love Patty B.

  35. Lisa and Ben Komadina

    To the Russell family, our sincere condolences go out to all of you along with our prayers. May God continue to give you the strength that you need in the times ahead. Our family moved in the neighborhood about 8 years ago and met Brian at neighborhood functions and holiday parties through out the years. Just knowing him the short time that we did, we found him to have a passion for enjoying life, and definitely full of life and laughter. He will be missed. Brian made a lasting impression on everyone that met him.

  36. Maxine Medley

    My condolences to the family of Brian Russell I have known him only a short while but I was so happy to know him because he was a truly wonderful person. I love his smile and laughs we shared at work. He will be greatly missed. He is with our Father in Heaven and he has been healed and enjoying his eternal life.rnGod Bless

  37. Dale Panico

    My sympathies to the Russell family. It was wonderful knowing Brian for the short time that I had known him. I enjoyed the conversations we had and him talking about the wonderful vacations he went on. He was truly a very nice and bright person to talk to. He will be in my prayers.

  38. Paul Fucetola

    Brian was a great man and will be missed by all his co-workers at Roche. He was a caring and giving man, that I feel blessed and honored to have gotten the chance to know him for the short time I did. Rest in Peace you will never be forgotten.

  39. Diane Polito

    I am truly, deeply saddened to hear about the passing of Brian. He was an amazing person, someone who could ALWAYS bring a smile to my face in our days working together at Roche. Bright, warm, funny, truly caring, and a gentleman always… traits that are seldom found all wrapped up in one person, but that was Brian and more. My sincerest condolences to his family.

  40. Mike DeGiulio

    My deepest sympathy to the Russell Family and Friends. I have had the pleasure to have known Brian since 10/27/1977 our Bids night at Chi Phi Fraternity. Yeecch as he would say… We did have fun. He was a true gentleman and friend.

  41. Lewis DiSanto

    Brian was a very special person who lived life to the fullest. He was like a third brother in my family growing up and a fourth son to my parents in the 70′s. While we did not stay in close touch since then my last visit is a great memory when, about 12 years ago, while walking in a park in Phili my wife and I spotted Brian strolling by, what a coincidence!. He proudly showed us around his office and we were so amazed and happy for his success, he just looked like he was on top of the world. But our favorite memories will always be skiing at Waterville Valley, driving up there at 2 am in the morning in his 74 muscle car with loud stereo blazing Dobbie Brothers or Elton john, and laughing so hard sometimes skiing we would fall down laughing. And of course the happy hours apres ski…. our hearts and prayers go out to his family….our sadness is only overcome by our deep faith that he is in God’s loving hands now. rn

  42. Jay A. Wildgoose

    To the Russell Family,rnI would like to express my deepest sympathy for Brian passing. I have fond memories form our URI days and I happened to see him at a meeting I was at for BMS. I kept hearing this voice announcing it was time to change rooms and I finally figured out who it was and asked one of the vendor corporate people if Brian worked for the company and we had a chance to visit and catch up. I was nice to see him again.rnrn

  43. Howard Malzberg

    My condolences to the Russell family and friends. I met Brian at URI in 1977 and roomed with him at the fraternity and down the line. He was great person and friend who I cannot say enough about. I have many fond memories of our time and friendship at URI. We will all miss him dearly.

  44. Mike Caserta

    I am very sadden to hear the news about Brian. My sincere condolences to the family and a major loss for all of us who had the chance to get to know Brian. Only because I was out of the country stopped me from joining all his family and friends last night. I had the previlege of working with Brian at CoMed and sharing many stories about his family and boating. Just a wonderful person that passed through our lives and we are all the better for it.

  45. Rick Rodes

    Brian was truly one of the good guys in our medical education profession. I first met Brian while serving on a Board and while his comments in meetings were direct and candid, he always had a smile on his face and twinkle in his eye. He loved being with people and people always loved being around him. I learned a lot from Brian and yet he always treated me and our colleagues as peers. My prayers are with the entire Russell family who I had the pleasure to meet last night….and YES BRIAN, YOU CERTAINLY DID GIVE LIFE QUITE A RIDE!

  46. Geoff and Jeanne Moriak

    I met Brian 11 years ago when we became neighbors. Brian took on the task of forming our neighborhood Homeowners Assoction(HOA) when no one else would take the job. I got to know him even better as we worked together on the HOA for many years. He was always there to lend a helping hand, give advice or offer his house for every meeting we had. My best memories of Brian were at neighborhood parties. He loved to socialize and he had a wonderful smile and contagious laugh. He truly enjoyed life to the fullest and I loved that about him. I feel very blessed by the fact that I got to spend time with Brian about three weeks ago. It was a life changing experience and one that I will never forget. It has been my pleasure to meet Brian’s family over the last several months, they are truly a special family. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  47. Mike LoPresti

    I first met Brian when he hired me at CoMed, and then had the chance to re-connect with him years later when he moved to Roche. The past few days I’ve thought a lot about how grateful I am that our paths had crossed again. rnrnAs our tightly-knit industry came together over the past few months in support of Brian, I was amazed at how many times I heard the same comments from so many people that had worked for him or with him… “He was my mentor.” “He’s a leader and a visionary.” “He’s the reason I am where I am today.” “He was always looking out for me.” And, of course, “We always had so much fun working together.” rnrnBrian touched so many lives, yet always seemed a bit humbled and surprised by this realization. It’s comforting to know that he’ll live on through so many of us.rnrnThanks for the honor of knowing you, Brian. We’ll all miss you.

  48. Susan Cassidy

    My deepest condolences to the Russell Family. I worked for Brian at CoMed from 1998-2002. I remember meeting Brian for the first time in which he pointed out he was from Rhode Island. I was surprised that he knew who my cousin was — Don Bousquet, who is a cartoonist known in RI for his Quohog series of books. I thought I’d score some points by getting my cousin to sign a book for him. He did, Brian loved it, and he was as fair to me as he was to everybody else. I was saddened to learn of his passing as he was an amazingly generous human being.

  49. simone karp

    It is with my deepest sympathy that i write this note to you. Brian was always such a happy man and so full of life. It was a priveledge to know him. I had the pleasure of meeting Brian about 15 years ago. He always had wonderful vision for the future and ideas that were well beyond the time. I will always remember him with the smile on his face. It is a loss to everyone that knew him.

  50. Karon Simmonds

    I become overwhelmed in thinking how to remember Brian in words. In the broadest sense, I have so many memories that will last me a life time in honoring our friendship. From the tax client pizza party when we first met, through sharing mountain homes and our love of scuba diving we mostly shared ourselves.

  51. Sheree Aston

    Brian was fun, smart and very generous. He bought a house in the Poconos just to have more great times with Karon and I. He was all about sharing and caring. I have many fond memories of New Year’s day dinners and playing funny games at holiday parties. He will be missed.

  52. Darlene Allia

    My deepest sympathy to the Russell family. Brian will always be remembered by me as a compassionate, caring, smart and funny guy who I loved being around socially and professionally. rnrnBrian did have a serious side to him and it appeared when we met to prepare his income tax return for the past 19 years.rnrnWe had some similar traits like both being aquarians, having a collection of boxes (his was larger) and a touch of OCD (which we used to joke about). rnrnI’ll remember the good times always with a smile on my face. Brian you will be missed very much!rnrnYour friend and Accountant

  53. Rob Mabary

    When I first met Brian, we were Presidents of competing medical education companies. Remarkably, he helped me and my company become accredited for pharmacists and at no charge. That’s the kind of guy Brian was, always willing to help and with no strings attached. Over the years we became very good friends, and worked on numerous projects together. He touched the lives of many, and will be missed by all. Good bye for now my friend.

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