We are sad to report that one of the key people in the development of the club, Mike Bracey passed away peacefully at home on Saturday, the day before his 86th birthday, with his family around him. Mike was probably our longest serving continuous member, having joined the club, then Old Lutonians from school in the early 1950’s and joined the committee in 1953. Still a Vice President and regular attendee at lunches, he was a Park man for almost 70 years. As well as his time as a versatile player, always prepared to play any position to serve the needs of the team, Mike was one of the key men in the development of the club over the years and held a number of positions including Secretary, Team Secretary and Ex 1st XV Captain. He played a key role in managing the re-development of the changing rooms in the early 90s and the 50th Anniversary organising committee. Every role Mike took on was always performed with his customary enthusiasm, good humour and efficiency.
Mike was also a keen referee both for the club and with East Midlands and was involved in the development of leagues in the mid 80s and served as a Midlands League official from the start of leagues in 1987 until 2002, taking on responsibility for Midlands One (level 5).
Outside of rugby Mike was a keen distance runner, regular entering events including the New York marathon. I recall whenever he took part in local events, having effortlessly crossed the line much earlier, he would always wait at the finish for any other runners from the Park and cheer us over the line.
A great club man, he always kept in touch and was great company with amusing anecdotes and recollections from years past. He will be fondly be remembered by all of us who were lucky enough to have known him. There will be an opportunity to celebrate Mike’s life and contribution to our Club when current restrictions are lifted.
At this time our thoughts and condolences are with his wife Jill and his family.