NORWALK, Conn. -- One of the most influential men in the Norwalk basketball community died on Thursday after a long illness.
Mike “Bubba” McElveen, 44, the longtime Recreation Coordinator at the Carver Center in Norwalk and the coach of the AAU TMT Express Basketball team. He fought kidney disease and had been hospitalized for nearly a year.
“He had a positive influence on the youth of Norwalk for decades,’’ the Carver Foundation said in a statement on Friday.
McElveen attended West Rocks Middle School and Brien McMahon High School. He also played basketball for the Senators.
“I want to say but I will say job well done and salute to you,’’ one his former players, Kyle Jordan, wrote on Facebook. “I celebrate you on your influential life and all the things you did in Norwalk.”
McElveen was more than a coach and rec coordinator for the boys who played at Carver. He was also a mentor for many of them.
“Michael and his staff used basketball to teach and mentor boys while instilling values of cooperation, work, good sportsmanship, and team commitment and applying those qualities in all aspects of life,’’ the statement on the Carver page said.
“The best coach a kid growing up could ask for,’’ wrote Drew Sawyer, a former player from Norwalk who played at King School in Stamford who now plays at Endiicott College. “Many lessons were learned on and off of the court as well as memories created that will live in our hearts forever. A true staple in the community and a piece of the Carver that will never be forgotten.”
McElveen’s death comes on the heels of the passing of another Norwalk community pillar in youth sports. Kern Jordan, Kyle’s father and a former McMahon football star who coached track, basketball and football in town, died in February at age 54.
McElveen, like Jordan, held boys to a higher standard on the court and the classroom. He was impactful and had powerful reach in the community.
“Every day Michael demonstrated in his quiet and consistent manner that any kid could succeed if he really wanted to,’’ the Carver statement said.
No obituary information was available. For more information on condolences, visit the TMT Hoops Facebook page.
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