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Remembering Bob Brown 
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Joined: Sat Jan 23, 2010
Posts: 150
Location: Savannah, MO
Post Remembering Bob Brown
It has come to my attention that back in November of 2012 Bob Brown, long time and very successful coach at Richland High School, passed away. I thought that news should be brought to the quiz bowl community, as he has impacted many, if not a majority, of our lives and quiz bowl careers.

I look back on Bob Brown as the most passionate man about quiz bowl I have ever seen. While he didn't go out of his way to attend every tournament, it was his quality, not quantity, of sharing his fiery passion and dedication to the activity that really hit it home for me. I can still remember travelling to tournaments in Rolla and Kansas City to watch my brother play for Savannah, and it always seems that we would play Richland some time during the day. While the matches wouldn't always come out in his favor, I remember Bob Brown always cheering on every player for the Savannah team, despite them being his competitors. He got to know our team very well, and would bring up my brother knowing obscure bands from his childhood up until the last time I was in his presence. It was things like that and getting to know and cheering on every player from every team that has made Bob Brown one of my idols.

I still remember sitting down and discussing with Bob in the coaches' room at the Marshall Tournament last year, and how eager he was to see all the young players doing so well and being so enthused about finally playing high school quiz bowl. Despite Richland being a "household name" in the Missouri quiz bowl world, and the most state championships of any team of any class in the state under his belt, Bob was the first to pat players on the back even after a very one-sided match. He gave every player respect, whether they were from Class 4 schools in STL, KC or Columbia; or whether they were Class 1 schools in the Lead Belt or the backwoods of Northern Missouri. His ideals and sportsmanship stuck with me throughout my four years playing at Savannah, and they came in handy in many tough matches against his team and schools across this great state he loved so much.

The moment I realized how much he really cared for the game was at 2011 Class 3/4 State. Though the all-state medals had been ordered too late and the results weren't tabulated yet, Bob Brown got up there and delivered one of the most passionate and moving speeches I've ever witnessed (and most of us know how noisy and tense a room full of quiz bowlers waiting on stats can be). He was nearly moved to tears as he ended his speech with a "Long live quiz bowl!" and a fist in the air. He moved the entire room into rounding applause, and lived up to errors on MACA's part for not having the medals. But all of the sudden that didn't matter. All the really mattered was that teams from all over the state were gathered, having fun, and learning from the game.

Bob Brown's ideals have shaped the direction of Missouri quiz bowl, whether you are an old player who became nervous at the notion of having to play one of his top-notch teams, or whether you are beyond his time and enjoying the fruits of many of the seeds he helped plant. Either way, Bob Brown will be missed by the quiz bowl community as a whole, and I wish Richland the best of luck as they move past the loss of one of Missouri quiz bowl's all time finest.

Thu Jan 31, 2013 3:52 pm
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