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A Memorial Tribute to Les Brown

                                         written by Diane Miller



 Les Brown, A special friend

            As I sit at my computer today I am  trying to figure out the words  to describe  how my friendship with Les Brown began.  I've been told by many that you can count your true friends on one hand. Well Les was one of those, and I will always cherish our friendship, one that lasted for over 45 years.

      My husband and I first met Les in the 1960's when we  joined the Professional Archers Association.  Little did we realize at that time  what a big part archery would play in our life and that the friendships made  would last a lifetime.

      It was during that same time we  met Hall of Fame Founder, Dave Staples who would later become my mentor.  Les was the Tournament Director for the PAA and Dave was in charge of promotion. As time passed the four us became quite a team promoting, setting up and running   tournaments. Dave later became the President, and I was the Promotional Director. Jim became head referee. Les was in charge of running most tournaments and Jim was his right hand man. This went on for over 10 years. So many great memories that time will never erase.  As time passed my husband and I left the PAA for other interests, but we never forgot our friends, and Les was definitely one of those special people in our life that we would never forget. Les was for real, he was a very compassionate person, he wasn't afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve. Did we have some misunderstandings, of course we did but we worked them out, that is what real friends do.

     When my husband passed away in 2001 , Les and Dave were two of the first to call, even though a few years had passed since talking  they were  there when I needed a friend. It was shortly after that Dave called and asked me if I would consider  becoming  Executive Director for the Archery Hall of Fame.  After five calls and a lot of consideration I finally agreed. That was nine years ago. We immediately asked Les if he would be our historian, he was a walking talking archery encyclopedia. When ever we did not have an answer to a PAA question or an historic archery question, Dave would say call Les, he will know. Sure enough he would know, for 2 decades he was the heart and sole of the Professional Archers Association.  The PAA was where his heart really was. He never  got over its demise.

Les was a strong supporter of the Archery Hall of Fame and believed so much in our mission. In fact he was one of the handful of people sitting around the dinner table in the late 60's when "The Dream" was born. I remember that meeting like it was yesterday. I am so happy that he was at our last induction and was able to witness the Dream become reality. He later told me he would not have missed it for anything. Even though he drove all night and was just about to have cataract surgery the next week. His health was failing yet he didn't want to let the rest of us down, through hell and high water he had to be there for the opening of the museum. He wanted to see so many of the people he new so well being honored after all the years of waiting. We need more people like Les in this world. To many of them have left us and the circle is growing smaller every day.


If there's archery up in heaven and hope that there would be, right now I'll bet Dave, Les and Jim are planning a new adventure.

     Hey guys, put it on hold for a little while, you have to wait for me.




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