Eight Bells: Hatch Brown
Published on April 17th, 2018
Harold “Hatch” Brown Jr., of Winthrop (MA) passed away peacefully, surrounded by his loving children, on April 11, 2018. He was 86 years old.
Hatch was a devoted husband, father and world class sailor, coach and mentor to tens of thousands of beginning and elite sailors throughout his long, distinguished career.
Hatch was born at his grandparent’s home in Rockport, MA. After graduating from West Medford High School, he served in the Korean War, as a land surveyor based in Germany. He took advantage of the GI Bill and attended Boston University, graduating in 1959.
While at BU, Hatch was a champion sailor winning A Division at College Nationals and continued to compete competitively after college winning North American Championships in Etchells, Fireflies, and Thistle classes. He also shared his love and knowledge of the sport working at Community Boating on the Charles River where he met his wife, Claire.
Hatch was a manager at Sylvania for six years prior to being asked to join MIT Athletics as Head Varsity Sailing Coach in 1967. He took over as the third Sailing Master in 1975 and for the next twenty years devoted his life to the advancement of college sailing until his retirement in 1995. Many sailing regattas and service awards now bare his name.
He was the 1978 Coach of the Woman’s US Sailing Championships in Holland, Judge in the 1988 Olympic Trials, Inductee into BU Athletics Hall of Fame and the Intercollegiate Sailing Hall of Fame, Director of NE Intercollegiate Sailing Association (NEISA) for over 14 years, Commodore and Champion at Community Boating, and Marblehead Frostbite Sailing Club, and President of Mass Bay Sailing Association.
In retirement Hatch remained very active at his local Cottage Park Yacht Club in Winthrop serving on the race committee and acting as mentor to sailors in the youth sailing program and frostbite racing series. He enjoyed racing his model boat in the CR914 class at CPYC and in Marblehead.
In addition to his passion for sailing, Hatch was an avid reader, fly fisherman, animal lover and animal advocate. Hatch’s dedication to the sport he loved was matched by his kind-hearted teaching abilities and endless patience. His warm smile and infinite wisdom will be missed by all who were fortunate enough to know him.
A Memorial Service will be held at the MIT Sailing Pavilion, 134 Memorial Dr. Cambridge, MA on Sunday, May 13, from 9am-12pm.