THE Cork basketball community is in mourning following the death of popular referee and coach Gary Blount over the weekend.
Blount and his family are steeped in Cork basketball. A distinctive and witty character, he was respected as a referee and enjoyed great success in the past 10 years as a coach with Brunell, helping them to two U20 National Cups.
Hugely knowledgeable about basketball in Cork and beyond, his children all impressed on the hardwood, with one of his sons Jordan, an Irish international, currently playing as a professional in Spain, after an impressive Division 1 college career in Chicago.
He is survived by his wife Kathleen and children Jordan, John, Scott, Garreth, Colm and Mollie.
Neptune sent their condolences to the Blount family on social media.
"Very sad news today on the passing of Gary Blount. A great servant to Cork and Irish basketball as player, coach and referee. We send our condolences to his wife Kathleen and children at this very difficult time. May he rest in peace."
Ballincollig Basketball Club posted on Facebook:
"We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing earlier today of Gary Blount. As a Referee, a coach, a player Gary was an iconic figure in Cork basketball. Everybody at Ballincollig Basketball Club would like to express our deepest sympathies to Colm, Garreth and the entire Blount family. He will be missed by all but tonight he is in our thoughts and prayers. May he rest in peace."
His sons Colm and Garreth have been key players for Ballincollig in recent seasons.
Brunell where his daughter Mollie plays, acknowledged his contribution to their success in the modern era, including two U20 National Cup crowns.
"It is with regret we learned today of the passing of one of our past coaches, Gary Blount. Gary coached the club to two U20 National Cup successes and was a vital part of our first ever Superleague coaching staff.
"He will be greatly missed by all at Brunell Basketball Club along with the entire Cork Basketball community. Our thoughts and prayers are with Kathleen, Mollie and all the Blount family. May he rest in peace."