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Former Vanderbilt player Dai-Jon Parker dies in boating accident

Chris Denson, Dai-Jon Parker

Chris Denson, Dai-Jon Parker


Friday morning it was reported that former Vanderbilt guard Dai-Jon Parker, who played this past season at the University of Indianapolis, passed away at the age of 22 on Thursday. Parker was one of two men on an inner tube that was being pulled by a pontoon boat at the Morse Reservoir in Indiana, with a large wave knocking both off.

According to Fox 59 in Indianapolis, Parker did not resurface and his body was found by authorities hours later. Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings released a statement on the passing of Parker Friday morning.

“We are extremely saddened with the news of Dai-Jon’s death,” Stallings said in the release. “Everyone who watched him play basketball knew what kind of athlete he was. But, to those of us who knew him and loved him, he was as good and happy of a person as you would ever meet. He always had a smile on his face and I will always remember him for that smile and the positive spirit he had.

“We send our deepest condolences and prayers to his family, friends, and others who were lucky enough to have met him. The Vanderbilt basketball family will miss him.”

Word of Parker’s passing spread through social media Thursday night, with friends, former teammates and current Vanderbilt players who were recruits during Parker’s time with the program among those who paid tribute to their friend.