Sheldon Brown, rest in peace

The world recently lost a champion of cycling and a real character.

The beard and Igor the plastic eagle were Sheldon Brown trademarks.

Sheldon Brown (July 14, 1944 – Feb. 3, 2008) was “Parts Manager, Webmaster and general Tech Guru” of Harris Cyclery in West Newton, Mass. He was an encyclopedia of bicycle knowledge, and it is said he answered 500+ emails a day from curious riders.

His site,, is a wealth of bike info, philosophy and musings on Life in General. If you Google for bike tech info, is likely to come up.

In August 2007, Brown was diagnosed with primary progressive multiple sclerosis. Although he missed riding his bicycles, he enjoyed cruising around on his recumbent tricycle where, he says, he made eye-level friends with lots of dogs. This was just one of the bright sides of MS.

Brown died Feb. 3 of a heart attack. He was 63.

I wish the best to his friends and family, and I encourage all of you to appreciate his online legacy.

3 replies
  1. nathan says:

    i heard it was more like 1000 emails a day.

    i also met him once, he happened to be ten feet tall, and bullet proof.

    miss you sheldon.

  2. jeff says:

    Sheldon Brown could’ve been one of those guys with the “know it all” attitude – but he wasn’t.

    Personally, he answered my questions in a way that showed he cared – not just about bikes – but people.

    ride on sheldon.

  3. Sean says:

    A true loss. Anyone who ever spent time roaming around Sheldon Brown’s personal web pages –after being humbled by the breadth of knowledge in the Harris Cyclery pages– would be able to tell how fine and generous and loving a person he was. His pages describing his family are incredible. He had a huge variety of personal interests, most of them esoteric and very much a highly intelligent person’s sort of interest. A great loss to the greater Boston, MA cycling commuinty, a great loss to the world who accessed Sheldon’s knowledge via the intertubez, and a huge loss to his family and friends.

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