Obituary – Yugoslav Volleyball star Branko Lužanin (85)

Belgrade, Serbia, August 6, 2020. Branko Lužanin, a former member of the national team of Yugoslavia, passed away on Wednesday, July 29, in the city of Kikinda, at the age of 85.

Another member of the great generation of players representing Belgrade’s Volleyball Club ‘Yugoslavia’ and long-time member of the Yugoslav national team has gone.

He was one of the best spikers and tempo attackers in Europe of his generation. Lužanin later played for Crvena Zvezda, Priština and Kikinda. He wore the national team’s uniform over 50 times and was a member of the starting six at both the European and World Championships.

With the Volleyball Club ‘Yugoslavia’, he won four and three titles from the Yugoslav national league and cup, respectively, and with the junior team of the very same club, he secured the national league crown without losing a single set in the process. He was one of the best products of the so-called ‘Barefoot Boys’, which the legendary coach Dragoslav Sirotanović trusted to compete on the international stage while they were still juniors!

His father, Ognjen, died when German fighters shot down his airplane, over Yugoslavia, in 1941. He was raised by his mother Rajka, and supported in everything by his wife Boba (herself a Volleyball player too).

He re-united with his loved ones last week as well as with many of his former teammates – the late Zoran Petrović, Dragan Rajačić, Stevan Pališaški, the Uzelac brothers, Ljubo Ilić, Srpko Petrović, Predrag Sretenović and Aleksandar Petrović. All of them, together with Branko Lužanin, played some great Volleyball. Hamid Gačanin, Branko Draganić, Srdjan Jerčić, Milovan Simić and their former captain Petar Stanišić can still recall their achievements.