Goodbye, Eagle One (December 10, 2007)

Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
A fan has died. Wayne Howard, aka Eagle One, operated #Wing-Commander on the DALnet (later BeyondIRC) for over ten years. It is no secret that Eagle and the CIC staff did not get along; what's less often remembered is that we were once contemporaries and friends. Eagle, ace, Bearcat, Skyfox and I ran #Wing-Commander together for several happy years in our youths.

It's hard to memorialize someone who didn't like you much. I felt bad about the situation and tried to contact him many times over the years, but was always ignored. I regret now not having done more. Nevertheless, Mr. Howard had a huge impact on my own life - and he helped create what we know as Wing Commander fandom today... including the friendships that I consider the most important in my life. I will endeavour to remember him as the kind gentleman who sent his friends candy at Christmas and who surprised me with a phone call when I was a scared boy preparing for dangerous surgery.

I don't know how many of the #Wing-Commander crew are still around, but please leave your memories at the forum - we'll collect them in the tributes section alongside those to the developers who created our universe. Eag deserves that much.

Original update published on December 10, 2007
Last edited by a moderator:
Eagle was a good friend.

I remember the first time I logged into #Wing-Commander. At the time I had been trying to find #WCRPG to join that online RPG and came across #W-C. The first person to talk to me when I showed up was Eag. He sad hi and offered me the ubiquitous cup of coffee. He did that for everyone, regardless if you were a regular or a person who ended up on the wrong channel.

When I, unfortunately, parted ways with #WCRPG under protest and duress, Eag was the first person who told me not to worry about it and said that I was always welcome to continue coming to #Wing-Commander and ever since then I was a regular. He made me feel welcome when I would get frustrated by those over at #WCRPG and helped me put it behind me.

As the years went on, and was at times computerless, I would often times go to a public location and check my email and would be surprised to find an email from Eag or another member who would always pass on the news that Eag was waiting for me to return to #WC family. ANd Ever time I came back, Eag would be the first one to welcome me back and always gave me at had become his trademark cuppa. :)

When I started one of my fanfics, Eag helped me out as technical adviser for me in regards to certain points about my main character. From that point on, I just knew that I had to have a character based around Eag's personality. The first time I sent him a copy of the chapter where the character I based on Eag appeared, he read and enjoyed it and said that I did a pretty go job in portraying my characters.

In the years that I have known him, I never once heard him say a negative word about anyone. i remember sharing with Wayne the complete 12 episode series of Area 88 and had the joy of watching it online with him at different times. Earlier this year was able to snail mail to him a couple of cd's I'd burned and wanted to share with him the music and get his opinions and thoughts. Needless to say, he enjoyed the music and emailed me his thanks.

Wayne, I'm going to miss you my friend but I know that in the future we will be reunited and
you'll be waiting there with a hot cuppa coffee. And when I do get there, it'll be just like old times.

Farewell my friend.

Langston D. 'Knightewolfe' Smith, II
#wing-commander is still thriving on the beyondirc server, right now, a good number of us are mourning his passing and talking about the way he was. I'm aware of the fall out between the CIC staff and Eag, but I'm thankful for the kind words. Eag was a kind-hearted man and I will sorely miss him for the rest of my days.
I share a lot of thoughts that LOAF already stated. While recent years weren't the best, those early years in #w-c were some of the best.

Eagle-1 called me once and walked me through setting up a Armada boot disk after I'd FUBAR'd up my dad's setup. It was a great help and I did appreciate it.

The only issue I have with #w-c now is that most CICers have been banned for years. Even if we wanted to extend a branch it simply wasn't possible.
1996. That's when I first found myself online and #wing-commander was a daily ritual. It was a great community back then and it still is today.

All the best.
I remember Eagle-1 as a unique and kind person who offered every stranger unconditional respect and caring, something that's hard to come by on the Internet at large.

I remember he helped me test Vega Strike when it was still just a drawing program that rendered a wireframe hellcat, all the way to the point where I tried to tack on multiplayer. He had great, great patience with us younguns.
I also remember the dozens of star craft games we attempted, including one I think where we could only use nukes, ever against the computer. He was always a co-op sort of guy, wanting his friends to work together.
And all those days I was in highschool trying to figure out how to fulfill my dreams, and getting good advice and well wishes.

Personally I never felt so great about the rift in the CIC and #wing-commander communities, but after some years of listening to everyone chat about it, one thing became clear---we're all just people interested in the future of humanity and a particular story, Wing Commander, that weaves into it our hopes and dreams.

And if there's one thing I think Eagle would have wanted it's for his passing to bring people together--
I salute you LOAF for making this kind post on your news website. Hopefully this marks an era of great collaboration and integration of all wing commander communities on the internet :)
I remember that name. Man, it's hard to believe that people we've known or at least read about are dying off like this. It's been a heck of a year for such things, hasn't it?


Still, my condolences to his family. I recall seeing him as a name on the channel a few times, and he seemed to be a nice guy, although I don't recall talking to anyone on #wing-commander much after the split on #DALnet (I do remember many netsplits on there, though).
Wow, haven't visited your site in quite awhile, this was an unpleasant surprise to see as a news item at the top of your page. I, like many, spent a lot of time in #wing-commander and spoke to Eagle-1 often. The community he helped create was something I enjoyed for many years. He helped me when I started my first Wing Commander website and again when WCHS got up and running. His efforts surely enhanced my enjoyment of Wing Commander. My heart goes out to his family and friends.

Dan "Akkbar" Hardwicke
Eagle-1 was quite possibly the kindest and gentlest people I have ever had the fortune to know. In all the years I knew him he never had a bad word to say about anyone, even the people he did not get on with. Eagle-1 was what made that channel special. I credit him and that channel with being a big part of keeping me sane during the 6 years I was ill and words cannot express how grateful I am for that.

My one true regret is not being around to chat with him one last time. I'm praying for both him and his wife.

Hats off to the CIC crew for being good enough to post this news and for a nice message from LOAF!

In addition, heya Akkbar! Long time no see, hope all is well with you. Still playing Football? Sorry.. I mean Soccer!
Goodbye mate

Well, I doubt anyone around these parts would remember me as my time at #wing-commander was sporadic and many years ago now. But I certainly remember Eag. I just wanted to echo those thoughts of other members. I rememeber him as a person who stood out among all the personalities I have met on the internet in the last 10+ years.

Eag's kindness and welcoming nature made him popular. I remember how refreshingly 'normal' and easy going he was when I first met him. It's hard to really sum the man up in a few measly sentences.

I honestly don't know the story behind the feud between the "two camps" of wing commander fandom but those I have met over the years from both "sides" have been good people. It's a shame those differences were never able to be reconciled.

Some memories that endure:
* Always being offered a coffee when I turned up
* Eag patiently explaining to me how this "IRC" thing worked ;)
* Trying in vain to get a Starcraft multiplayer match going with the US #Wing-Commander guys (Eag included) via my Australian dial-up connection
* Eag explaining this amazing new game called "The Sims" to me and how darned addictive it was

So long Eag. You will be missed. I only wish I had dropped by recently to say hi.
I dont post much cause I still Service my country`s special forces ,so I don`t have

the time I had,but I should at least say something about this.

I just saw the news about Eagle-1....I didn`t knew him a lot....#wing-commander
was the first contact I had with Wc fans, and Eagle-1 was very kind and he
helped me a lot.

My Nickname "TCSTIGERSCLAW" was even -I can say- his idea.

When in 2002,discovered wcnews. I told him about BanditLOAF and how great
fan he was too ...He replied strangely,like he was bothered but he never said
anything bad about Ben.I never asked what happened between them,I didnt care

I haven`t chat with him for at least 3 years ,but I still remember him very good as the first person who welcomed me to the Wing Commander community.

It must have been 10+ years when I first joined #Wing-Commander. I remember he was always the first to greet me, and we chatted alot while I was there. But as time went by I went to other things.

I went to visit #Wing-Commander again about a year ago, and again he greeted me and remembered who I was, which was incredible because it must have been more than 5-6 years since I was last there. Wish I would have had more time to speak with him.

You will be missed Eag.
It was over 10 years ago when I first ventured into #W-C. Although I normally lived in #wc-aces, I would occasionally head over to the other channel to see what was going on. Eag would always greet everyone and make them feel welcome in the channel, no matter what kind of drama was going on in the fan world.

You will be missed, guy.
In July 1996, following a frustrating introduction to the WC universe playing Privateer, I posted on the (then) Origin boards. Eagle-1 responded with an informative and friendly post about what to do next. I still have that post sitting in my games folder.

For the next 11 years he and I exchanged forum posts and emails, chatted on IRC and sent small gifts and made the odd phone-call (which wasn’t cheap being located down here in Oz.) Although one can never really ‘know’ somebody through the internet, we shared many laughs and personal thoughts (even down to our wives having the same name), in many respects we regarded ourselves as twin brothers separated only by the inconveniences of age and place.

Eag was passionate about Wing Commander and the chat-channel he (and others) founded, but not in a fanatical or evangelical way, he just enjoyed the game and the ‘community’ that surrounded it.

He was one of the most generous individuals I have ever come across in terms of his ability to offer guidance and support to anybody that needed it, often on very personal matters. He was in all respects a mentor to many people of wide-ranging ages, cultures and social backgrounds.

Yes, he was uncompromising in ensuring that the #WC channel was a safe and friendly place, and determined that vulgarity, personal abuse and discord would not play any part in it. There were those who sometimes disagreed with that approach and various schisms occurred. In each case I never experienced any hint of anger, malice or back-biting from Eag, just a resigned disappointment that things had gone awry, including the meltdown on the old Origin boards.

His failure to respond to old animosities again was not driven by malice, but the view that life was too short to waste it on past negatives, especially in something so ultimately meaningless in the grand scheme of things as a computer game. Sadly, that view has proved to be prophetic.

Many of us have lost a good personal friend this week, but I certainly feel privileged to have known him.

Farewell cobber!
This is tough for me, I sat here in front of the computer for hours at a time, letting memories flow through my head. What the hell do you say to the only person who's really given you a fair shake every time you stepped in to speak with him?

I don't know, I never had a father growing up, I was a terribly awkward and shy kid who struggled to socialize normally. The only time I have ever felt comfortable being some place was in a private message conversation with Eagle. It only began because I had been shunned from this place.

I once caused trouble in #Wing-Commander because it was the cool thing to do I guess. Two and a half years ago I went to Wing-commander because I was deemed a joke by most of this community. Fairly, I might add. I went for 2 weeks just idling in the channel before Eagle messaged me because he wondered why I never spoke.

I didn't lie to him, I explained that I had once been banned from his place because I had caused trouble, but I wanted him to know that that wasn't why I was there. He thanked me for my honesty and never made any issue of it.

As the months passed Eagle became like a father to me, though some times a little weird and just in his own world, he made me feel comfortable with myself, the world, taught me how to deal with tough things in life. He was a man of ideals and strong philosophies. Sometimes that rubbed people the wrong way and things happened, but he never compromised his view of what a community should be. I have never been as bold.

As an awkward and easily intimidated person. I lacked confidence a lot of times and just tried to fit my self into places rather than stand on my own merit and make my own way. Eagle taught me many things and was probably the only person who had any patience for me other than my partner.

His last act as my friend was to encourage me to go after a job as a Scout for a Arena League football team. Not that he understood what the job was, he just knew how to calm my anxiety. He said "You can only risk not getting the job. If you don't try, you'll never have a good shot. =)"

I never got the chance to tell him his advice worked. A year and a half ago I started on with the Tri-City Fever and it's been the best thing I could have imagined. Eagle, you are a man that I only hope I can aspire to be, I'll never be as good as you, I even feel like a betrayed you in some respects by disappearing. I could always count on a kind word and good advice, I only wish I could have returned some of what you gave to me.

I just hope you won't mind looking out for me wherever you are now.

-Lt. Rance-

P.S. I finally learned to enjoy a good strong coffee after a long flight. Peace be with your spirit my friend.
1996 was the year i met Eag, i was drifting in IRC limbo after the breakup of my favorite channel #quake-uk. I had recently started playing WC3 with a friend and we both found and joined the channel at the same time.

Eag was the first person to greet me (still a very limited newbie) and from that day showed me nothing but kindness, friendship and a comforting non-judgemental shoulder to unburden my woes onto.

I remember the e-mails i recieved from him whilst going through my internet free days back when i started uni in 98, and his joy at my return after i got my broadband connected in 02.

He was the first person i spoke to out of all my friends i have online when my mother died, and even offered to phone me if things got too much, conversly i remember the phone conversation i had with him in holland when a bunch of us from #wc got together there, he was so thrilled that we had all met in real life.

Sadly i can't help feel that the world lost one of the good ones when he died, rest in peace my good friend, we'll meet again someday :)
Wow. I'm so very late to hearing about this. 5 years late. I recognize most of the names on this thread, and I imagine they'll recognize mine. So I hope you'll forgive the necro-thread.

Eag, and Mrs. Eag, were a big impact on making me feel welcome when I ventured into IRC and found the old channel. Outside of a couple of US residents I knew, that was really the first place I spent much time talking with people from other countries. One of my fondest memories was listening to a Pakistani and an Indian guy talk about their favorite movie theater in a town they learned they both went to for weekends. I remember the Israeli kid that went to bed in the early afternoon so as to get up in the wee hours to log on and chat with the US folks. I remember Wizzie and his sister trading insults (within the bounds of the channel's language rules) and being amused that they were sitting in the same room having an argument on the net. I remember Scouser's kitten launching itself onto his head from the top of the curtain rod. And a lot more people and a lot more things. So many hours of my life were spent either in that chat room, or in later ventures inspired by that chat room.

Here's to you, Eag. I look forward to meeting you in heaven.
Took me a while to figure out my password. Haven't used it in the better part of a decade.

I'm several years out on this as well. Wouldn't have seen it, but it got bumped to the recent threads list on the main page as I was taking a look and the title caught my eye.

This is unfortunate. We didn't always see eye to eye but #w-c was somewhere where I spent quite a few hours for a couple of years back in my early teens. Despite friction, he was a friend to a lot of people and I hope that he is remembered fondly by his friends and family.
Sorry I am late to this. 13 years late.
My name is Rob, and I worked with Eagle-1 on the wcrpg on mIRC. He and I created a lot of the ships, and tested out a lot of his systems for the RPG over there.
I am remembering a lot of the names, and stories now. I was an aspiring 3-D artist at the time, and I created a lot of the ships and visuals he would use in his games. Including the TCS Maelstrom. Which is what brought me to this post somehow.
almost 15 years since I stopped going on mIRC and I am still remembering him today.
And I recognize a lot of the names here still.
He had a large impact on quite a few years of my life, back in the day.
I was actually hoping to somehow contact him when I came across this today.
Lot of fun working on the Maelstrom design with you man, as well as everything else. Sorry I never finished the Kilrtathi Saga video.
You are still remembered.