An accident claimed the lives of three teenagers who were on their way to play basketball at Hedges-Boyer Park March 21.
Saturday afternoon, 40 teams registered to play in a single-elimination 3-on-3 tournament on the same courts where Brady Hedrick and Clint Morris Jr., 17, and Brandan Schaade, 18, were going to play basketball that evening.
Tim Ragle, Brandan's stepfather, had a courtside seat for Saturday's games. He said he thought the tournament was awesome and was the way Brandan would've wanted it.
Family and friends come together to support the families of the three victims of a fatal car acciden
"He would've loved it," said Christine Ragle, Brandan's mother.
Tim said he never realized how difficult it is to cope with the loss of a child.
"(The support) means a lot," he said.
Ethan Fuller, who graduated with Brandan Schaade from Hopewell-Loudon High School in 2010, shoots a basketball during the 3-on-3 tournament at Hedges-Boyer Park Saturday afternoon.
PHOTO BY JILL GOSCHE
Garritt Hedrick defends as his brother, Dominic, holds the ball during the 3-on-3 tournament at Hedges-Boyer Park Saturday afternoon. Their cousin, Brady Hedrick, was killed in an accident last month.
Jared Fleming, a Columbian High School junior, and Cody Scott, a senior, organized the tournament, which drew students from various schools around the area.
Jared said the sale of T-shirts, the entries from the tournament and the concession stand raised an estimated $8,000. Other fundraisers included Girl Scout cookie sales, a bake sale and a raffle. Each family is getting about $3,000, and organizers are going to take the money to the families Monday, he said.
Brent Hedrick, Brady's uncle, attended the tournament in which his sons, 13-year-old Garritt and 11-year-old Dominic, played.
How to help again
Mane Cinsations LLC Salon & Mini Day Spa, 6 Sycamore St., is to host a cut-a-thon 1-5 p.m. today. Donations from haircuts are to be given to the families.
Also, extra T-shirts are for sale from Saturday's 3-on-3 tournament. To purchase one, call Jared Fleming at (567) 230-6630.
"They wanted to be part of it," he said.
Brent said he and Brady hunted, fished and worked around the house, and Brady liked to visit his house to spend time with his sons.
"(He was a) heck of a kid," he said. "We will miss him."
Brady always had a smile and wanted to be a policeman, Brent said.
"I actually think Tiffin lost a good one," said Dave Hartsel, Brady's great-uncle and a retired Tiffin Police Department lieutenant.
Brady was a junior and Clint was a sophomore at Columbian, and they were enrolled in Sentinel Career and Technology Center's public safety services program. Brandan was a 2010 graduate of Hopewell-Loudon High School and was studying forensic accounting at the Lima campus of Ohio State University.
"He was a great kid, caring and loving. He loved to help other people. ... He loved basketball," Brandan's mother said.
Tim said he thinks Brandan's love of the sport came from him.
"I can't do it anymore. ... He started watching me play," he said.
Clint was described as a happy-go-lucky teenager who always was joking and loved playing basketball.
"He was a jokester. ... If you were sad, he would put a smile on your face," Christine said.
Jared said the tournament was moved to Tiffin Community YMCA when it rained and was completed around 8 p.m. Saturday. He expressed appreciation for those who went to and assisted with the tournament, for those who supported the teenagers and their families, and for businesses that donated time, effort and money.
He said the tournament exceeded all of his expectations.
"The community made it a lot smoother than what I expected it to be," he said.