Monroe High girls basketball coach Leroy Osborne and his Monroe girls’ basketball team look forward to providing a Christmas for a family less fortunate than themselves each December.
While every family has been memorable, Coach Osborne says this year “feels a little bit more special.”
The reason is because they are trying to make this Christmas a little better for Chancellor Adams.
Adams is the son of former Carolina Panther, Rae Carruth and the late Cherica Adams.
Carruth was convicted of conspiring to kill Cherica Adams, when she was eight months pregnant, Nov. 16, 1999. Carruth is still in prison.
Chancellor Adams was born the same day by emergency Caesarean section. Chancellor was born with permanent brain damage and cerebral palsy after being without oxygen for more than an hour before he was born.
Cherica Adams died on Dec. 14, 1999.
While Adams’ life was altered forever because of the way he was born, now 17 years old, his grandmother, Saundra Adams (who takes care of him), told Scott Fowler of the Charlotte Observer that he is “thriving not surviving.”
“The way Chancellor has fought his entire life is inspiring to all of us,” Osborne said. “We reached out to Saundra (Adams) to see if we can provide a Christmas for Chancellor. From the first day of basketball tryouts, we told our team that this was our project and to go out and advertise it. ...
“We have had a ton of response. Everyone wants to help Chancellor have a better Christmas.”
The Monroe girls’ basketball team will present the gifts to Adams on Dec. 16 when the team hosts Piedmont at 6 p.m.
Adams will serve as the girls’ honorary captain before the game. After the game, the Monroe and Piedmont girls’ team will take a picture with Adams at midcourt, before presenting him his gifts.
Coach Osborne says they have received over 100 gift cards, a television with a DVD player, a football signed by the Duke football team and Washington Redskins’ gear is also on the way from former Monroe football star, Jameson Crowder, who now plays for the Redskins.
You can still donate a gift card by taking it by Monroe High to the main office before 3 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 15 or Friday, Dec. 16. or to the gym from 3 to 6 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 15.
There will also be a booth at the Piedmont game Dec. 16, set up to accept more gifts for Chancellor.
The Adams’ family has requested gift cards from Apple Store, Old Navy, Target and Walmart, but no money.
All 13 players from the Monroe girls’ basketball team have bought Adams a gift card and Piedmont girls’ team is also bringing several gifts, according to Osborne.
“Friday night is going to be really special for all of us,” Monroe senior forward, Quianna Parker said. “We just want him (Chancellor) to be happy. We want him to know that Friday is his night and it’s all about him and we want to make him feel important.”
Jay Edwards is a freelance writer: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Charlotte Observer columnist Scott Fowler contributed.