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In Memoriam Jean-Claude Billen
Tue 21 May Jean-Claude Billen (30/11/1941 - 18/05/2024)
BDC learned of the passing away of Jean-Claude Billen, a sports enthusiast with great club love for RLS Bruxelles (continuous member since 1959/1960).  We also know him as an excellent photographer who frequently took pictures at various sporting events, he was also hugely committed to the BDC sports archive.

As an athlete, he participated in the Helsinki Deaflympics (4th place in 1961), Washington DC (4th place in 1965), Belgrade (7th place in 1969) with the national basketball team.  He then applied himself to tennis with participations in the Deaflympics in Malmö (single 1/16th final and double men's 18th final in 1973) as well as Köln (single 1/8th final and double mixed 1/8th final in 1981) as well as 8 selections for the Dresse-Maere Cup (this is similar to the Davis Cup, where you compete as a team) as follows: 

  • 1974 in Sommacompagna (ITA): 3rd place
  • 1976 in Brussels: 3rd place
  • 1978 in Paris (FRA): 2nd place
  • 1980 in New York (USA): 3rd place
  • 1982 in Palermo (ITA): 4th place
  • 1984 in Nivelles: 5th place
  • 1987 in Pau (FRA): 7th place
  • 1991 in Hatfield (GBR): 9th place

He was also multiple Belgian champion with the following titles:
- Singles : 12x between 1969 - 1992;
- Men's double : 11x between 1969 - 1996;
- Double mixed : 3x between 1982 - 1988.

He was technical director in Tennis for BDC from 2008 to 2012.

He was also active in various sports such as:

  • Table tennis :
    (single : cat. B : 1970 1x Nat. Champion)
    (double : cat. A with Jean-Claude Callebaut in 1975 Nat. Champion and in cat. B with Pierre D'hoe in 1970 Nat. Champion, in 1983 with Christian Delien)

  • Billiards :
    (in category B : 1993, 1998, 2004, 2008 4x Nat. Champion, 7x 2nd pl. cat B and 6x 3rd pl cat. B)
    (tie billiards : 2001, 1x Nat. Champion, 2x 2nd pl. and 2x 3rd pl.)
  •  Chess

 He was also delegation leader of the Deaflympics in Sofia (in 1993), where Belgium was able to compete with its largest delegation in Belgium's sporting history.

We will miss him and wish his family and friends much strength in this difficult period.

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