PEORIA, Ill.– Central Illinois celebrated the life of basketball icon, Howard Nathan Saturday morning and the legacy he left behind.
Nathan passed away a week ago while he was hospitalized at OSF St Francis Medical Center. This is after he was found unresponsive in his Peoria home.
Hundreds of people inundated Church of The Living God as they replayed memories in their head about the basketball star.
People who shared life with him throughout his basketball career gave presence there, including alumni from Manual High School and DePaul University.
“Howard, as a grade schooler was known by just about every basketball coach in Central Illinois. He was the kid that came in scoring 40 or 50 points in a Saturday morning. Everybody knew Howard. When he got to Manual, we knew what to expect and I guess our job was to corral that talent and be sure that we reach goals that he and his family had,” said Ken Meischmer, former assistant coach at Manual High School.
Countless people had stories to tell about his passion on the court. He was also well known for his kind soul, willing to teach the next generation of basketball players.
“He gave us confidence. He was our superhero and always will be. There will never be another Howard Nathan,” Basketball Star Jerrance Howard said.