IT is with much sadness we acknowledge the passing of Les Atkin, Newcastle Basketball’s first ever Life Playing Member. Aged 79, Les passed away on Monday, June 28, after a long struggle having survived a stroke seven years ago.
Les was a small forward in the golden era of Newcastle Basketball when the men’s team won 10 state titles from 1962 to 1972, missing only 1969 in their incredible winning streak.
During this time Les played for NSW at the Australian Championships in 1963, 1967 and 1968. In Perth (1967) NSW won the Australian Championships by defeating Victoria in the final. He was one of seven Newcastle players in the team that was coached by Newcastle’s John Raschke.
Les was a true family man who spent all his working life with National Cash Register (NCR), and was a very talented technician. He is survived by his wife Laraine, daughter Meg and son-in-law Mark, son Rob and daughter-in-law Samantha, and grandchildren Nate, Harry, Lloyd and Harvey.
Rest in Peace, Les. You will be sadly missed, and the Newcastle Basketball community extend our sympathy and condolences to your family and many friends.
Thanks to Terry Charlton and Denis Kibble for their assistance.
Les is pictured top-left, standing in the photo.