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August 26, 2014

Basketball prospect drowns after his kayak capsizes

Not long after arriving at Mission Bay in San Diego on Saturday, basketball prospect Abdul Shanun sent out a tweet that read, "Thank God for a beautiful day."

That simple message of hope reads tragically now given what happened next.

The 17-year-old immigrant from Ghana drowned Saturday afternoon after his kayak capsized in Mission Bay, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported. According to the newspaper, Shanun didn't know how to swim and either didn't wear his life preserver or didn't wear it properly.

The death of Shanun hit those in basketball circles hard.

"Sad to hear of the passing of my bro @Abdulshanun .. Ima miss you bro. I love you man," tweeted Georgetown commit Jessie Govan, a club teammate of Shanun's with the New York Lightning.

"My prayers go out to the family and friends of @Abdulshanun .. Sad news of his sudden death.. Smh," tweeted Los Angeles Clippers forward Jared Dudley, a San Diego native.

Like many young African prospects, Shanun came to the United States in hopes that his basketball talent would allow him to one day receive a college scholarship. He played in both New York and Atlanta in the past but had plans to attend Balboa City School in San Diego this year.

Shanun, a 6-foot-8 forward, had realistic hopes of achieving his dreams of a Division I scholarship prior to his death. Rivals.com rated him a three-star prospect and he reportedly already held a scholarship offer from UMass.

The last tweet Shanun sent out wasn't the only sad one on his timeline. Only one day earlier he wrote, "2013 & 2014 have been the most confusing, challenging, emotional, hardest, eye-opening & unforgettable years of my life and blessed."


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