TUPELO • Jaeven Dixon, an eighth-grader at Tupelo Middle School, died on Friday after collapsing during basketball practice with the Tupelo Saints Basketball Organization.

“It is with great sorrow that we mourn the loss of our beloved teammate, friend but most importantly, our brother,” Coach Brian Rucker wrote in a public Facebook post on Saturday. “Jaeven lived his life to the fullest and touched so many people during his time here with us.”

Rucker described 14-year-old Dixon as “the glue” that held the travel basketball team together.

“He made others around him better, made others laugh and had this swag about himself that other kids couldn’t help but notice,” Rucker wrote.

Lee County coroner Carolyn Green said Dixon was taken to the emergency room where he was pronounced dead. An autopsy was performed on Monday and a preliminary report is expected on Wednesday.

Grief counselors are available this week for TMS students, TPSD communications director Gregg Ellis said.

Tupelo Middle School’s FCA chapter is planning a school-wide celebration of Dixon’s life on Thursday, Feb. 20, at 7:30 a.m. in the gym.

blake.alsup@journalinc.com

Twitter: @AlsupTheWriter

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