Persons celebrating an Anniversary in February 2009

This time the first birthday greetings go to the Czech town of Prostejov where our member Karel Mokry looked back on half a century on February 7th. For about 18 years he has now run his well-known chess shop, those who are looking especially for East European chess literature will certainly make a strike in his extensive range of books online.

Only one day later Yuri L. Averbakh celebrated his special day, he has now completed the 87th year of his life. Frequently referred to as a Russian chess legend, our tireless honorary member carries on leading an active life in chess: last year he still visited the Chess Olympiad at Dresden, we only recall the dinner at Eckberg Castle (>> Gallery Eckberg Dinner).

We go on in a one-day rhythm, our Spanish member Miquel Artigas from Sabadell was next on February 9th, he reached the "55" on that day. In the last years we have regularly reported about his chess activities in a small circle – the Círculo Paluzíe (here the link to the last domestic Spanish meeting in Tarragona 2008), and he also joined in our regional meeting in Venice last year.

Calvin G. Hori from Massachusetts celebrated his 55th birthday too – it fell on the 11th of February. It was two years ago that we mentioned him for the first time in our column, and we refer to that entry as there have been no news reaching us in the meantime.

From the past we already know quite well our correspondence chess expert from Milan, Carlo Alberto Pagni: on 13 February it was 78 years ago that the happy event occurred. He too participated actively in Venice 2008 – and gave a review on first chess games played by phone (see Venice 2008 - p. 6). In the same year another publication from his pen came out – a collection of CC games of the famous Paul Keres [Le partite per corrispondenza di Paul Keres (limited edition, Venezia, 2008)]; the book was also presented by our Swiss member Toni Preziuso in SSZ 10/2008 (pdf file) on p. 19.

Again two days later Arno Nickel celebrated his 57th birthday, as a new member he makes his debut in our column. Not only to chess friends from Central Europe the name of the Berlin correspondence chess grandmaster, author and publisher (Edition Marco) should be well known for a long time. The yearly – since 1983 – published Schachkalender belongs undoubtedly to the most popular German chess publications, for this year he has presented for the first time an English edition – the Chess Companion 2009 will hopefully be a big international hit as well. But also other books from the publishing house Arno Nickel are popular and in demand, think only of the new edited cult book Schach für Tiger (Chess for Tigers, by Simon Webb). A short time ago we had still included in our Announcements Hübner’s new match book on the world championship 1894 Lasker – Steinitz which also contains other early Lasker matches.
A periodical particularly significant for chess historians was the Schach-Journal (Scientific & literary contributions to chess training, chess psychology & chess history) which he published together with Alexander Koblenz in the years 1991-1994, unfortunately publication had to be ceased shortly after Koblenz’ death (†1993).
Lately Arno Nickel has also been active as a contributor to the magazine Kaissiber where he follows in Chrilly Donninger’s footsteps (column "Computerschach").
Instead of additional remarks I would like to refer to the Wikipedia page on Arno Nickel as well as to the page The World vs. Arno Nickel 2006 where you will find two photos of him (scroll down!).
A certainly desirable web site of the Edition Marco seems to be in preparation (available in the net without contents, here the address:

Time flies relentlessly: Benjamin ("Billy") F. Levene too is one year older now, on February 16th the record holder (in years of life) among the KWA members celebrated the event of his birth for the 91st time! A detailed appreciation came out on the occasion of his "90th", those interested may look up there (>> February 2008).

Our concluding mention is meant for the treasurer of our association, Guy Van Habberney who turned 55 on February 27th. For some obscure reason he is in our column for the first time (probably his birthday was unknown to me before). After Guy’s move last year he lives now with his family in the Belgian municipality of Boechout (Province Antwerp), in his job he works as an economic advisor in Brussels. At the beginning of 2008 he became a board member and took responsibility for the finances after Bert Corneth had presented a well-ordered budget. In his hobby Guy mainly cultivates the collecting of chess literature, and he is also often found at our club meetings – we recall here only the last gathering in Wijk a few weeks ago.


PS: You will find all previous birthday greetings in our archives!