Special Hoopfest backboard remembers friend

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by By KREM.com/KING5.com

KREM.com

Posted on June 11, 2010 at 4:46 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jun 12 at 10:24 AM

SPOKANE -- At Hoopfest, you find most of the backboards dominated by corporate sponsors.

Amidst that, one court stood out, and it was a name people in Spokane would never have recognized.

Few people in Spokane may know of Chase Anderson, but there's a basketball court at Hoopfest bearing his name.

For the people who played on the court, that name being on the backboard meant all the difference.

Chase Anderson was killed last April while riding his long board down a Seattle street.

"He turned the corner, and didn't see the bus, and the bus just came and swiped him," said Alexa Linger, Chase's girlfriend.

He was 19-years-old, and a freshman at the University of Washington studying business.

Linger designed the backboard, a sun, based on a character from the movie "Remember the Titans."

"He was from California, first of all, so he had the whole surfer look going on, and they called him Sunshine because of that movie," said Linger.

His friends and family raised the hundreds of dollars needed in order to dedicate that backboard in his name.

With Chase's father taking pictures and his younger brother watching, Alexa and friends played every game this Hoopfest on the Chase Anderson court.

Chase leaves behind his mother, father and two brothers.

Previous Coverage

KING5.com

SEATTLE - A skateboarder taking a break from his studies was killed early Friday morning after he collided with a Metro Bus in Seattle's University District.

Seattle Police say 19-year-old Chase Anderson was skateboarding along the street when he collided with the bus at 1:20 a.m. at the intersection of NE 45th and University Way.

Witnesses say the skateboarder hit the bus, which was going through a green light, and the bus drove over him. Fire department medics declared Anderson dead at the scene.

"The bus driver wasn't even aware there had been an accident," said Linda Thielke, Metro Transit spokesperson. "Right away, (she) was stopped by police a short distance and became aware of the accident."

Seattle Police Department and Metro safety officers are now investigating.

Anderson was a member of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity at the University of Washington. His friends say he was taking a break to get something to eat while studying for midterms.

"(He) was looking for others to go and get a snack while he was studying. He took his longboard, his skateboard, and a tragic accident happened," said friend Tom D'Angelo.

"And the best way I can sum it up is he knew everybody and he was a good friend ... He was just the nicest kid. It's just so tragic."

Anderson, a freshman from Bellevue, was a member of the Dean's List. He was last year's Bellevue High School male athlete of the year - a star in football, basketball and track.

On Friday, high school students mourned the loss. A vigil was to be held at 8:30 p.m.

"Everyone's really silent and respectful today," said Casey Shane, a senior.

"It's brought a lot of sadness," said Kayley Kirkpatrick. "People are opening up their minds more and realizing how fragile life is."

Anderson's father says his son was a free spirit.

"Sports were part of his life, but his friendships defined him," he said. "We feel for the bus driver. Our prayers go out to her."

The bus driver has been driving with Metro Transit full time for the last year. The 46-year-old is on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure, during the investigation.

The University District police chief says he's never seen a skateboard accident in the area this bad.

He warns boarders to remember that long boards run fast and that skateboards can be dangerous because they don't have brakes.

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