Remembering Chad Brown one year on
It was about a year ago this week that we went to downtown Las Vegas for Chad Brown's memorial service.
It took place upstairs at Binions; a casino that before the internet came along was home to the WSOP and the beating heart of world poker. Like many others we'd come from its new home, the Rio, to pay our respects to a man who had had success in both. For a couple of hours the deserted corridors above the old bullpen came back to life with stories from the good old days.
It's a day I still remember clearly, along with all the stories. Like that from Phil Hellmuth, who talked about how Chad owned him repeatedly at the tables. Or from Todd Brunson, who choked up talking about the type of friend he was. And Kenna James, whose nickname "Cowboy" was given to him by Chad, and who fought back tears which caused all of us to do the same.
It was, as you'd expect, a sad day, but an inspiring day too. Those of us who arrived having never really known Chad, left wishing we had.
No doubt it'll be a similar scene tomorrow when, a year on, the second Chad Brown Memorial tournament takes place, this time at Planet Hollywood on the Las Vegas strip.
We've written about it already this month, which you can find here, but we have no qualms about bringing it to people's attention again.
Hosted by Maria Ho, it all starts at 6pm with a silent auction and cocktails. Then the tournament itself begins at 7pm, with proceeds funding important research by the T.J. Martell Foundation's Sarcoma Research Projects. It's money that will help drive clinical trials and new drug discoveries.
It's a poker tournament so they'll be plenty of prizes on offer, including, among others, a seat to the PCA in 2016, donated by PokerStars.
So if you're in Las Vegas, you're out of the One Drop or you're biding your time before the Main Event, get along to Planet Hollywood. Take your buy-in and your Chad stories along with you. You'll be welcome with either.
For details go to www.downtownchadbrown.org
Stephen Bartley is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.