NORTH RIDGEVILLE, Ohio -- Basketball was his passion, and now a teen’s memory will live on through the sport that he loved.
It was a proud moment for parents still dealing with the loss of their son. They cut the ribbon to help the community dedicate the Alex Sismour Memorial Basketball Courts. They are named in honor of their 14-year-old son, who died after he was struck by a car while riding his bike last September.
"It just shows the support of the community and how great they are. They've helped us get through one day at a time, by all the wonderful things they've done for us," said Alex’s mother Doreen Sismour.
"These are good things. It takes our time, it keeps our minds a little occupied, makes us focus on the good things and thinking about Alex, but at the end of the day, you still go back home and there's still no Alex," said the teen’s father Brian Sismour.
The revamped courts are located at the Wilcox Elementary School playground, in North Ridgeville. Cleveland Cavaliers mascot Moondog joined the crowd for the dedication. There were lots of activities for kids and adults, especially related to basketball, Alex's favorite sport.
"Alex was a great kid. Nobody ever had any problems with him, so nice ... loved sports. Whenever I went over to his house, we played basketball. He loved to play Xbox,” said Alex’s friend Logan Armaro.
"I think it's great. He loved to play basketball. He always came over my house and played," said Alex’s friend Tommy Millgart.
Wilcox school nurse Denise Abend and physical education teacher Heather Hulec spear headed the effort to make the improvements.
"The Sismours are a big part of this community: they've got lots of friends; they're a great family and everybody's kind of been together with them through this whole journey," said school nurse Denise Abend.
"Losing Alex was very hard. He was a very close family member and a great student of mine. I needed to do something so that the family would help heal and our students and our community would heal in honor of Alex after he passed away," said physical education teacher Heather Hulec.
"I'll just end with saying, 'Mr. Alex, I hope you're seeing this ... I love you bud,' " said Alex’s father, pointing and looking toward the sky.
It cost about $7,500 to make the basketball court improvements. Students and community members came up with the money by holding various fundraisers.