Rising Star Basketball Player Dies At 17 After Medical Emergency, Family Says

Public/Screenshot/Instagram — User: shad_madethis

John Oyewale Contributor
Font Size:

An exceptional Alabama high school basketball player died at 17 years old Thursday after collapsing during a workout session, according to a local report and family statements.

Pinson Valley High School senior Caleb White suffered a medical emergency late Thursday morning, reported. White was brought to the hospital, where he was pronounced deceased despite life-saving measures, according to the outlet.

School principal Michael Turner broke the news of White’s demise to parents and said the school would offer counseling to students and employees, reported.

“Caleb White collapsed on the basketball court, went into cardiac arrest and all attempts to resuscitate him failed,” George Varnadoe Jr., identified by as White’s grandfather, wrote in a Facebook post Friday. Varnadoe Jr. acknowledged the “outpouring of support” his family has received.

He further revealed White’s passing shocked the family, writing, “[o]ur whole family was really looking forward to his upcoming senior season and afterwards, playing for a D-1 school and then perhaps the NBA.  but… wasn’t meant to be.” (RELATED: LeBron Speaks Out For First Time Since His Son’s Cardiac Arrest)


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by YOUR #1 EDITOR (@shad_madethis)

White “was an honor student … excellent role model, phenomenal basketball player ranked 25th best point guard in his class in the nation & number 2 in the State of Alabama,” Varnadoe Jr. wrote in a separate Facebook post Thursday.

“I was honored to know Caleb personally and loved the spirit he carried,” Pinson Mayor Joe Cochran’s tribute to White reads in part, according to Cochran helped shape the athletics program at White’s school as a coach, fundraiser and longtime public address announcer prior to becoming mayor, the Trussville Tribune reported in 2022.

White “was an outstanding student-athlete who played in the North-South All-Star Basketball Game last month. He was an outstanding student-athlete and role model,” Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) Executive Director Alvin Briggs said.

White was also “a first-team all-state selection this past season for Pinson Valley and a finalist for the ASWA Class 6A Player of the Year,” according to AHSAA.