L.A. church, community mourns the deaths of two women

The Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) is mourning the loss of two members of its denomination.

The Rev. Dr. Matthew W. Brown, of Harvest Church in L.B., and his wife, Msgr.

Melissa W. Tappan, were found dead Sunday morning in their home in the community of L.O.N.T.E. (Little Old Town North of Tomorrow).

The church said they were in their 60s and that they died of natural causes.

Brown and Tappon were active in the Baptist faith, which Brown is the second SBC pastor to serve.

Brown is also a former pastor of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Alabama, where he has been pastor for more than 30 years.

He has been married for 34 years and has five children.

Tappan is a retired educator.

She was the executive director of the Harvest School District in Harvester, Arkansas, and served on the school board for three years, from 2007 to 2013.

Brown had worked at the school district for three decades, first as a director, then as an assistant principal.

L.A.’s mayor, Eric Garcetti, said Brown had been a mentor to the students, and a great father to his children.

“His leadership, commitment, love and generosity of spirit were as evident as his love for all who attended the church,” Garcetti said in a statement.

“He will be sorely missed by all of us who knew him.”

Brown’s funeral is being held Sunday afternoon at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Los Angeles, according to the church.