60's Style - Bobby Brown - Port Kembla Jan 1967

Size Guide

Photo by Dave Milnes of the enigmatic Bobby Brown. 

 

Robert Eric Brown

(1946–1967)

Written by Andrew McKinnon

 

Affectionately known as Bobby Brown, his surfing prowess ranked with the best surfers of the 1960s such as Midget Farrelly, Nat Young and Peter Drouyn. He was only 17 years of age when he qualified for the first open mens World titles final in 1964 won by Midget Farrelly at Manly Beach, Sydney in front of a record crowd of 50,000. That first ever World title event launched surfing as a sport and the promising career of Bobby Brown who became a perennial open mens finalist in 1966 Nationals at Coolangatta, Gold Coast and 1967 Nationals at Bells Beach, Victoria. Brown was destined for surfing greatness and a World title was just around the corner when sadly Bobby’s life was unexpectedly ended only two months short of his 21st birthday, tragically killed in a Southside Sydney pub over a game of pool in August 1967.

Bobby loved to surf for the pure enjoyment, having been introduced to surfing by his older brother John who would lend him his board, until John would have to swim out to the waves to ask for it back. In a sense, this quiet achiever of surfing was the ultimate soul surfer. According to his fiancée Lorraine McIntyre (the love of his life), “He didn’t really like contests, he competed to keep his sponsors happy but he just loved to surf for the sheer thrill of it!”

His surfing hero status was immediately recognised wherever he paddled out, drawing big crowds in awe of his technical ability which was well advanced, using a graceful yet progressive style that was all of his own. His surfing life was well documented in the sixties surf magazines Surfing World and Surfabout and his career furthered in the movies ‘Young Wave Hunters’ by Bob Evans and Paul Witzig’s ‘Hot Generation’.  

Bobby was a surfing enigma, very much under the radar, a reserved unassuming quiet and polite man who let his surfing do the talking. Not only was he an exceptional surfer he was also a proficient surfboard shaper and a gifted carpenter for his Dad’s ‘Brown and Sons’ building company. (His longboards of that era are very scarce and collectible.) He was engaged to his much loved childhood sweetheart Lorraine McIntyre and they were planning to marry at the end of 1967 and go to Hawaii for their honeymoon.

A prestigious Bobby Brown Memorial Open surfing competition was held in his honour for three years only in the Cronulla area attracting the crème of Australia’s surfing talent. Midget Farrelly (a close confidant of Bobby) won the inaugural competition in 1968, Frank Latta won in 1969 (Frank was one of Bobby’s closest friends who died recently in the surf at Valla in August, 2010) and in 1970, a young 16-year-old rookie from the Gold Coast Andrew McKinnon won the last event at Wanda Beach.

“I grew up with the legend of Bobby Brown and am the proud custodian of the priceless Bobby Brown memorial trophy that has inspired me to write his untold story titled ‘The Life of Bobby Brown’ together with a documentary that will be released in 2016,” said McKinnon.    

 

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Hodaddy's black and white images are printed on Hahnemule photo rag (cotton) paper, or Moab textured art paper by Graphic Expressions in Byron Bay. Hodaddy has been using their printing services since 2003. 

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Size Framing Measurements (Image Size) Price
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