Baylor Family Mourns Student Who Dies In Plane Crash

Nov. 28, 2002

by Lori Scott Fogleman

The Baylor University family is mourning the loss of junior Chase Gray, who was killed Wednesday, Nov. 27, in a plane crash in McAlester, Okla. Four other members of his family - his father, mother, sister and brother - also died in the accident.

A graduate of Trinity Christian Academy, Chase was an accounting major at Baylor. He was a member of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity and played for the "Dream Team," a group of Baylor students who scrimmage weekly with the Baylor Lady Bears basketball team. To play for the Dream Team, students have to meet the same NCAA eligibility requirements as scholarship athletes do - they have to have a qualifying GPA, and they have to be cleared through the NCAA Clearinghouse. This was Chase's second season as a member of the Dream Team.

With her team in Bozeman, Mt., for a Thanksgiving weekend tournament, Baylor head women's basketball coach Kim Mulkey-Robertson issued the following statement about Chase Gray:

"I remember seeing Chase at practice Monday, helping us prepare for this tournament. It feels like we lost a team member because the Dream Team is so valuable in our preparation for games. Several of our players knew Chase on a personal level, and we have some young people with heavy hearts right now.

"I told them in our team meeting that it wasn't our job to question why. Our job is to try to go out and understand that Chase was a big part of this team. Whether we're successful or not this weekend, we're here because he helped us prepare. The greatest tribute we can give Chase is to play the game the way it's supposed to be played, the way he played it and the way he helped us on the floor.

"Dream Team members are students who love Baylor University and love Baylor women's basketball and want it to be successful. They practice with us each week, usually as the other team, and being young men, they bring a higher level of physical play and quickness to our practices than we could just playing each other. They come to all our games and support us, and they come to our year-end banquet. They are part of our team."

Jessika Stratton, a junior from Colorado Springs, Colo., and the Lady Bears' team captain, also spoke today about Chase:

"I met Chase during one of my first weeks at Baylor when he and a lot of his friends from Trinity were playing basketball. He not only played with the Dream Team, but he came to all of our games. I remember Chase stayed at Baylor last Christmas and held up a sign during one of our television games so my parents could see it back home in Colorado.

"Chase was an all-around college guy who had a great heart, a great faith and a passion for sports. He was a great basketball player, and a lot of our girls remember him from Monday, making jokes on the sidelines, just being Chase.

"The Dream Team means so much to us. They don't get paid. They don't get the glory. They do it because they want to help Baylor and help our team. It says a lot about their character that they are there for every practice because they don't have to be there."

A campus memorial service is pending.

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