Celine T. Siira (Brand)


Celine Theresa Siira (Brand), 93, passed away peacefully at home May 6 in Culpeper, Virginia. She was born Aug. 18, 1930, in New Ulm, and was the daughter of Edward Brand and Rose (Gleisner) Brand. She was preceded in death by husband Eino Siira, son James Siira, brother James Brand and his wife Doris (LaPlant) Brand, sisters Beata Wolak and Bonita Brand, and brothers Eugene and Anthony (Carol) Brand.

Celine is survived by her children Edward of Madison County, Cynthia of Culpeper, Robert of Culpeper, and Richard of Richmond. She has 10 loved grandchildren: Rebecca (Kenny) Dussault (Haverhill, Massachusetts), Michael Chedester (Richmond), Leah (Tony) Cambardella (Harpers Ferry, West Virginia), Katie Siira (Charles Town, West Virginia), Alina Siira (Germantown, Maryland), Valerie Siira (Augusta, West Virginia), Meron Siira (Augusta, Georgia), Rebecca (Eric) Hammerbacher (Beaufort, South Carolina), and Aidan Siira (Richmond, Virginia).  Great-grandchildren include Joseph and Celine Dussault (Haverhill, Massachusetts), Mariah Baker, Mark Daffron, and TJ Daffron (Harpers Ferry, West Virginia). She had many nieces and nephews scattered throughout the United States.

Celine graduated from Foley High in 1949, and began work at the Benton County Agricultural Extension office where she met Eino Siira. They married Feb. 1, 1950, and drove to Cancun, Mexico, for their honeymoon. Eino and Celine wanted to travel and they got their wish when Eino was accepted to work for the United States Overseas Mission as an agricultural extension agent working with foreign local governments in the field of agriculture. Their first posting was in Khoms, Libya, where they lived in a home on an olive grove in the country with electricity only partially during the day and lanterns or a generator for evening light. They then moved to Tripoli and finished their almost five years in Libya stationed in Benghazi. Eino’s next overseas assignments were Mogadishu, Somalia, for two years, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia ( five years), and Panama (two years). Celine lived in countries where she had to take care of her family in interesting challenging situations and she enjoyed the adventure. Throughout their lives, Eino and Celine traveled throughout Africa, Europe, Central America, South America, China and Russia, and drove to Alaska through Canada.

In her late 40s, she pursued a degree, and in 1980, she graduated from George Mason University with a bachelor’s degree in history. When they settled in Rappahannock County, Virginia, they built their own house, doing most of the work themselves, including laying the foundation. Celine became involved with the Rappahannock Garden Club, volunteered at the Rappahannock County Library, and played bridge in two bridge clubs. When they moved to Culpeper, she volunteered at the Used Book Store at the Culpeper County Library. In 2009, she was presented with the Volunteer Service Award by the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation, and in 2012, the Virginia Public Library Directors Association presented her with the Outstanding Library Friend Award. In 2014, Celine was the Culpeper Women’s Club Volunteer of the Year nominated for her hours of work. She increased the used book sales and started using a program to sell the used books on Amazon. The library dedicated the Used Book Store in her name in 2021. She continued to play bridge with her friends until several months ago. And she loved to read and discuss literature with friends and was an active member of the Culpeper Library book club.

But beyond her work in the community, she was a wonderful mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. She was known for her generous hospitality, great cooking, beautiful garden, and love of family. She will be missed by so many people.

The family will receive friends at Found and Sons at 10 a.m. May 25 and a 11 a.m. service is planned. Please consider The Friends of the Culpeper County Library, 271 Southgate Shopping Center, Culpeper, VA 22701 in lieu of flowers.

An online guestbook and tribute wall are available at www.foundandsons.com

Found and Sons Funeral Chapel of Culpeper is serving the family.