Frank S. Brian, a member of the Plains Presbyterian Church, departed this life peacefully and went to spend eternity with his heavenly father on May 14, 2017. He was born in Zachary, Louisiana to Frank E. Brian and Leona McVea Young Brian of the Zachary/Plains area.
He attended Zachary High School where he helped lead his team to a state runner up in 1940 and a State Championship in 1941. After graduation he received a scholarship to attended Louisiana State University where he led the Tigers to two successful seasons. His college basketball career was suspended when he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served during World War II from 1943 until 1946. After serving his country and receiving his honorable discharge, Frank enrolled back into school at LSU where he was named to the basketball All American Team and 2-time All-Southeast Conference. He was the last living member of the regular starting five at LSU who played a large part in the Tigers’ 35-7 record over the ’45-46 and ’46-47 seasons – the best two-year winning percentage in LSU basketball history.
In 1947 he signed with the Anderson Packers of the National Basketball League and was named Rookie of the Year by the NBL, which later became the National Basketball Association. He earned NBL All Star honors in 1948 & 1949. He was traded to the Tri-City Blackhawks (presently Atlanta Hawks) for the 1950-1951 season where led the team in scoring, earned All-NBA Second Team honors. He represented the NBA in the 1951 and 1952 All Star Games. Frank was traded to the Fort Wayne Pistons (now the Detroit Pistons) where he led the team in scoring in 1952 & 1953. He was ranked in the NBA’s top-6 in scoring for three consecutive seasons (1950, 1951 and 1952). He had five productive seasons with the Pistons who went to the NBA Championship in 1955 and 1956. His nickname in the NBA was “Flash” because he was so quick. He retired in 1956 with 6,663 combined NBL/NBA career points. He was inducted into the Zachary High School Hall of Fame, LSU Hall of Fame and the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame.
After retiring from his professional basketball career, Frank settled in Coushatta, where he raised his family and spent many years as a successful cattleman and owner of the Red River Livestock Auction at Armistead. He was an avid golfer, loved people and had many friends. He moved to Baton Rouge in 1976, where he managed investment property, was a homebuilder and was part owner in Quick-Kick. Later he moved back to the Zachary area close to where he grew up.
Frank is preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Leona Brian; sisters, Virginia Glasgow of Capleville, TN; Barton Reinberg of Zachary; Ollie LaCoste of Zachary; Henrietta Daniels of St. Francisville; and a brother, Malcolm Brian of Baton Rouge.
His sister, Leona Doss of Dallas; and brothers, Hardee Brian of Zachary and Joe Brian of Centerville, MS survive him. He is also survived by his loving and devoted wife, Elizabeth Thompson Brian and his lap companion Sidney Jo; Barbara Perkins Brian, Patricia Webb Brian; his daughters, Barbara Lee Brian Floyd of Lake Charles; Leslie Ann Brian Smith of Coushatta; son, Robert “Bobby” Brian of St. Francisville; 12 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild. He was a very devoted and supporting family man, Christian and great friend to all who knew him. He will be missed by all.
Funeral arrangements are provided by the Baker Funeral Home with services on May 20th at the Plains Presbyterian Church located at 22929 Old Scenic Highway, Zachary, Louisiana. There will be a time of visitation beginning at 9:00 a.m. Funeral service will begin at 12:00 p.m. with Reverend Joe Ratcliff of St. Francisville and Reverend Campbell Silman of Plains Presbyterian Church presiding over the service. Burial services will immediately follow at the Young Family Cemetery on the Plains Port Hudson Road.
Pallbearers will be grandsons Mark Brian, Rob Floyd, Tyler Cannon and Trent Cannon and son-in-laws Bobby Floyd and Johnny Smith. Honorary Pallbearers are Jay Lavespere of Alexandria; Jim Malone of Hot Springs Village, Arkansas; Buddy Wicker of Central; R.L. Walters of Coushatta and Cory Giles of Haughton. The family invites you to leave a message or memory in our “Memorial Guestbook” at www.bakerfuneralhomeonline.com.
So sorry to hear about Frank. Sorry we could not be with y'all so many good memories
June Bug and Kathy. Anderson
Marlan andersonRobeline, LA
Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. We have fond memories at the Coushatta Auction Barn. My mother remembers as a child enjoying great dinners and movies at the Strand Theater with the Brain Family.
Nations Family ( Brenda Nations Hamblin, Reed Nations, etc)Bossier City, LA
Praying for Frank and his family. A legend in college and professional basketball.
Richard McHughSalisbury Mills, NY
Praying for the family during this time of loss.
Michael S AdamsNorth Augusta, SC
I have known Frank for 40 years. We played a lot of golf together and I knew he was a special person. Thank you Liz for being so kind to me and keeping me informed of his condition. Sally and I will really miss him. Our prayers are with you and the rest of the family.
Ira & Sally JonesBossier City, LA
Our prayers are with your family Ralph and Sandy
Ralph & Sandy lassoRussellville, KY
Sorry we can't be with you at this time. You are all in our thoughts and prayers. Liz, you are an amazing lady and took such wonderful care of Frank throughout your years together. May God's loving arms bring you comfort.
Larry & Sharon LovellVernon, TX
Thinking of the Brian family. Sorry for your loss
Betty Charleville MsthisVictoria, TX