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Headstring News
Melvin 'Strawberry' Brooks Dies Days Before One-Pocket Hall of Fame Induction
Dec 29, 2006, 12:39 PM

A lifelong resident of Washington, DC, ‘Strawberry’ was born Dec 10, 1933 and passed away Dec. 17, 2006. He just turned 73, and was due to be inducted into the one-pocket Hall of Fame in January.

Brooks was a family man and a U.S. Army veteran and then worked for the Post Office for a time before he turned to pool full-time to support his family. He had nine sons and two daughters, so as he put it, he “couldn’t afford to miss!” He learned from observation, and would practice new shots or moves until he perfected them. At one point early on in his career he spent a little time on the road with Rotation Slim.

His best years as a player were between 1963 and 1973; during that stretch Strawberry recalls he “never lost a match.” Like ‘Chicago Bugs’, Strawberry would not play in pool tournaments; he would wait to play after the tournament was over.

With help from Grady Mathews and Dennis Wilson, Strawberry promoted two major one-pocket tournaments in 1991 and 1992 in New Carlton, MD. Both Eddie Taylor and Cicero Murphy made appearances there as special guests.

Strawberry was one of three players to be elected into this year’s class of inductees into the one-pocket Hall of Fame. He had received this news several weeks before his death, and was very excited about the honor, and looking forward to coming to Louisville for the induction dinner during the 2007 Derby City Classic, Jan. 4-11.