The George Henry Brink, Sr. Memorial Music Scholarship was established in loving memory of George by Orpha Leitch Brink.
George Henry Brink was the third of five children born to Annie and John Brink of Florence Alabaman on September 6, 1924. As a boy, he attended St. Joseph Catholic Elementary School and always said the nuns taught him much more than to read and write; they taught him how to tell right from wrong. Then added that sometimes it took a rule across his hand but they didn’t give up on him. He attended Coffee High School in Florence and because he let football get in the way, it took five years to finish. He served as the quarterback for the team.
A member of the greatest generation, George was a U.S. Marine Corps Veteran who served his country in the south Pacific during World War II. After the war, he attended Auburn University and the University of Tennessee earning a degree in Food Science Technology. Right out of college, George went to work for Creamery Package Manufacturing Company and worked for them for five years before he decided to go in business for himself. With $7,500 of borrowed money, George established Brink’s Inc. in 1955 to distribute supplies and equipment to the dairy and ice cream industries, Brink’s Inc. quickly grew to provide engineering sales and service in the industrial, food and beverage industries. His company sold and installed food processing equipment, bulk milk tanks, stainless steel tanks, and was the first in the southeast district to see a homogenizer. He employed 52 people and never had a losing quarter during the 34 years he ran Brink’s Inc. After George sold Brink’s Inc., he worked as a consultant for Dairyman Inc. for several years then served as a consultant for the industry until he closed his office on January 1, 2009.
George was a member of the Food Industries Suppliers Association and served as president from 1972-74. He brought the association to Knoxville for their annual meeting during the World Fair in 1982. For more than fifty years, George was a member of the Downtown Rotary Club and was one of the original members of Club LeConte.
George was a quick witted, compassionate man of unwavering faith, and a mentor to many. In addition to caring for his mother as long as she lived, he was a loving husband and father and acquired many friendships that lasted throughout his life. George was married to Alice O’Hearn Brink until her death in 2000. They raised nine children, all who have a college degree and enjoy successful careers today. In addition to paying full tuition for his children, he often paid for other students who couldn’t afford to attend the private Catholic schools. He was married to Orpha Leitch Brink until his death on March 19, 2012. His legacy also includes 22 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
George had a passion for good music and knowing that music was a great tool to help keep the mind sharp, kept classical music playing throughout his home twenty-four hours a day. He enjoyed attending the musicals at Pellissippi State and looked forward to the Holiday Spectacular in December each year. George would be so pleased to have his name associated with music as well as a deserving music student.
The scholarship provides $500 to a student who is a music major who has verifiable financial need and has at least a 3.0 GPA.