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Nobody calls an injury lawyer for fun. When your life and livelihood hang in the balance, you need a legal team that’s ready to stand up for your rights and secure you and your family the compensation you deserve.

Since 1993, James H. Brown and Associates has continually set precedents in accident injury law, standing up for our clients’ rights and ensuring they receive the support, care, and compensation they need. Our drive and determination come from our founder’s championship history, while our commitment to accident victims comes from firsthand experience with life-altering injuries.

Read on to learn more about the Brown family’s championship history, as well as how our successes and challenges in sport helped prepare us to stand up for the rights of Albertans.

A Legacy of Champions

James H. Brown is the son of Buster Brown, one of the most accomplished Albertan athletes in the first half of the twentieth century. Between 1925 and 1932, the elder Brown held records in the 100-yard and 220-yard dash. He became the permanent holder of the R.B. Bennett Cup and Blatchford Trophy after repeated dominance at the provincial level. On the international stage, Brown won Gold at the British Empire Games (now Commonwealth Games) in the 440-yard relay, setting a Canadian record in the process. Buster Brown also enjoyed a successful hockey career, winning multiple championships with the Edmonton Superiors (including an undefeated European tour in 1933).

With that kind of lineage, there was little doubt that James H. Brown would carry on his family’s sports legacy. However, James’ bright future was called into question at age 7, when a rare hip ailment left him bedridden for a year and in a wheelchair for another. Despite these early setbacks, Brown made a full recovery and went on to excel in sports, particularly hockey.

By 1963, Brown had become a standout centre, playing Juvenile AAA hockey for Edmonton’s Canadian Athletic Club. Despite being relatively young and unproven, he caught the eyes of the Edmonton Oil Kings, who were looking to shore up their roster for the Memorial Cup finals. This wasn’t just any Oil Kings team; back in those days, the Oil Kings (a junior team with players under age 21) played its regular season in the Central Alberta Hockey League, developing strength and skill in the rough-and-tumble senior league. Not only that, but the 1963 Oil Kings roster featured numerous future-NHLers, including Hall of Famers Pat Quinn and Glen Sather. Joining this highly-skilled and battle-hardened team right before the biggest championship junior hockey was no small feat!

The Memorial Cup Finals against the Niagara Falls Flyers proved to be a tough, physical series, with the Flyers dominating the first game by a score of 8-0. However, Brown and the Oil Kings fought back (both literally and on the scoreboard), winning the next three games in convincing fashion. In Game 6 of the series, the Oil Kings put the Flyers away for good, securing a 4-3 victory and Edmonton’s first Memorial Cup Championship.

A Dream Cut Short

During the series, a rapidly-developing Brown impressed the Oil Kings’ coaches and management, who invited him to continue his junior career with the team. Brown accepted, hoping to continue pursuing his dream to play in the National Hockey League. However, his dream came to an abrupt end at age 19, when he suffered a broken neck in a head-on collision with a drunk driver on his way home from practice.

Though Brown’s injury necessitated a long and painful recovery process, he remained hopeful of making a return to hockey. He enrolled in the University of Denver, whose hockey team played in the NCAA’s top division. Unfortunately, it was not meant to be; Brown continued to be dogged by complications from his injury, ultimately requiring a career-ending spinal fusion surgery.

A New Purpose

With his hockey dreams all but over, Brown decided to return home to Edmonton. He began studying law at the University of Alberta, with a particular interest in helping those who shared a similar fate to his own.

“When I was injured, there wasn’t much out there for support,” says Brown. “Today, we are dedicated to giving seriously injured people the support they need.”

Brown’s struggles with serious injuries taught him firsthand about the physical, mental, and emotional hardships accident victims endure. From two years battling a hip ailment to having his dreams taken away by a driver’s negligence, James H. Brown understands what it’s like to experience a serious injury. Today, the law firm bearing his name is here to ensure that accident victims are able to attain justice, receive compensation, and move forward with successful, productive lives.

Stay tuned for Part II of our Championship History, where we tell the story of Trent Brown’s journey from a hardnosed CFL defensive back to one of the heavy hitters of Alberta injury law.

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