Roger W. Brown

Roger W. Brown
(May 22, 1942 – Mar. 4, 1997)

Photo credit: Indy Star

Born in Brooklyn, New York, Brown gained fame at Wingate High School, then the University of Dayton in 1960. While in college, Brown was accused of being involved in a gambling scheme. While no players accused were found to have fixed a game, these accusations forced Brown to leave college and got him blacklisted by the National Basketball Association (NBA).

Brown subsequently worked at a General Motors plant in Dayton for several years and continued to play basketball in Dayton’s amateur leagues. In 1967, a new basketball league was formed called the American Basketball Association (ABA). Brown was one of the first players in the league as a part of the Indiana Pacers.

In 1969, he sued the NBA for banning him; they later settled out of court, with NBA officials welcoming Brown into the league. However, he chose to stay with the Pacers. Brown played eight seasons with the Pacers, winning championships in 1970, 1972, and 1973. He retired in 1975 as the ABA’s career leader in playoff games played, playoff victories, playoff points, championship-series games played, and championship-series victories.

In November 1971, he was elected to the Indianapolis City-County Council where he served from 1972-1976. When Brown died, his funeral was held at Market Square Arena, the then home of the Indiana Pacers. He was posthumously inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2013.

Burial, section 75 lot 39 (39.8183116, -86.1694508)