SURREY — A candlelight vigil was held on Saturday night at Panorama Ridge Secondary to commemorate Raphael Alcoreza. Many people lit candles and paid their respects to the basketball player who passed away at the age of 17.
Here are some more pictures from the candlelight vigil for Raph! Big shout out to the PR Basketball Alumnus for their love and support to the Alcoreza family and the PR Community! #proud #futureleaders @TomZillich @htsumura @BCHoopScoop #RIP #22 pic.twitter.com/ni0jRHQCfR
— Kenneth Headley1 (@KennethHeadley) December 10, 2017
Alcoreza, the Surrey basketball player who collapsed during a game last week, died in hospital on Thursday night.
Alcoreza, a Grade 12 student at Panorama Ridge Secondary, went into cardiac arrest during a game at Holy Cross Regional High School on Nov. 28.
The six-foot-one guard was rushed to hospital, not long after he told coaches he felt dizzy and lightheaded while at the bench.
His principal, Kevin De Boice, was at Royal Columbian Hospital when Alcoreza died, at about 10 p.m. Thursday with his family by his side.
“When I got there, I would suggest there was probably 125 people in the halls, on his account, at ICU. It was just packed with people,” De Boice said.
“He was the youngest, the third kid that has gone through this school. Raph was the last one, just an all-around nice kid. He was in (the) athletic community, he was in the Filipino community. There are so many communities (other than) Panorama Ridge, which is big enough on its own.
“He was one of those kids that’s liked by everybody. He wanted to play, one day, professional basketball in the Philippines, he wanted to be a fireman. He had aspirations, and was a team leader.”
Alcoreza was also the 2016 volunteer of the year in Surrey Crime Prevention’s LEAP High School Work Experience Program.
“He was a great kid,” said Surrey Crime Prevention Director Karen Reid-Sidhu. “He had such a promising future.”
Staff and volunteers at the organization are “devastated,” she added.
Late Thursday and early Friday, several posts on Twitter responded to Alcoreza’s death.
i love you always and forever. i am thankful that i had the chance to see you play last July. pic.twitter.com/QR2UIIIy3q
— ︎patrice alcoreza (@solarbeams) December 8, 2017
Our hearts and prayers go to the family of Raphael Alcorezaand the entire Panorama Ridge community. Rest in Peace #22🙏
— Holy Cross Athletics (@Athletics_HC) December 8, 2017
Such tragic news on the passing of Panorama Ridge student athlete Raphael Alcoreza. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all his family and friends.
— NWSS_Athletics (@NWSSAthletics) December 8, 2017
Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Alcoreza and the Panorama family on this sad day. RIP Raphael Alcoreza basketball world lost today #22
— SLSS Basketball (@SLSSBasketball) December 8, 2017
It comes with a heavy heart to announce that VanCity U17 team member Raphael Alcoreza passed last night. We were glad to know Raph and have the pleasure to spend time with him. His time was too short but we will remember him and keep him in our thoughts. RIP Raph. pic.twitter.com/1hENbvenS9
— Vancity Basketball (@vancitybball) December 8, 2017
Sincere condolences to the family and friends of Raphael Alcoreza from the BC High School Boys Basketball community.
— bcboysbball (@bcboysbball) December 8, 2017
On Tuesday (Dec. 5), a page on gofundme.com called “Support Raphael Alcoreza’s Family” was posted by Alumni Basketball, and raised nearly $14,000 in 20 hours.
“Reaching our goal for the Alcoreza family within hours shows the power our community has,” posted the unidentified administrator of the page. “We are astounded at the amount of love and support that’s being given to Raphael right now.”
The medical emergency happened during an early-season exhibition game between Alcoreza’s Thunder squad and Holy Cross Crusaders, at the latter team’s gym on 88th Avenue. The game was postponed after the incident, which happened in the first period.
Alcoreza wore jersey No. 22 for the Thunder, and was pictured holding the ball, front and centre, in a recent team photo.