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VALE: Russell Hopgood (Hoppy).

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  • VALE: Russell Hopgood (Hoppy).

    It is with a heavy heart for me to say goodbye to my uncle Russell Hopgood or Hoppy.

    Hoppy was a member of the Toowoomba Company of Archers, which began with just a few merry men in the early 70's. Throughout his life, Russell had an overwhelming passion for archery, whether it was socially, competitively or coaching.

    I remember when Russell took me out to the club for a working bee one Saturday in 1982 however it was cancelled due to little or no workers, so he said let's grab a bow. Now before this, the only time I picked up a bow was when I was about 8 at a fair in Toowoomba so I pulled the bow back and anchored directly behind my right ear - yep the string caught my ear and it felt like my ear was ripped off all together, but this time Russ showed me the correct way to shoot and became my coach for the next 5 years.

    By now, Russell moved up the ranks to President of Toowoomba Company Archers which he held office for over 10 years and represented the Toowoomba Company of Archers at many inter club tournaments and for a time, a regular member of the South Queensland Archery team for mens recurve as well. Russell loved to bring engineering into archery too. Being a boiler maker and fitter and turner, Hoppy would often turn up at the club with his latest inventions. One I remember was a stainless steel dual VBAR block he made - man it was heavy but the bows hardly moved in the wind!

    Russell loved inter club shoots yes the competition was fierce but the raffles held high court. Not like today where most competitors go straight home after the shoot, everyone hung around for hours after the shoot for the huge array of donated prizes for young and old and just talk to our friends and swap stories.

    Farewell Hoppy.