JESSE Chaplin-Burch was a “lovable larrikin”, “full of life and energy.”The 20-year-old Brighton East man died last week when a slam-dunk into a backyard basketball hoop went wrong.
Jesse was playing basketball with his 12-year-old neighbour. When he attempted a slam-dunk a brick wall that the basketball ring was attached to at the neighbour’s house collapsed on him, killing him instantly.
Jesse played ice hockey with the Oakleigh Saint Monarchs. Club president and captain Chris Kondos, a friend of Jesse’s for more than seven years, said his death had left a hole in the ice-hockey community.
“He was an ultra friendly person, he never had anything bad to say about anyone,” Mr Kondos said. “…a new face would walk into the room and he wanted to talk to them.”
A minute silence and pre-game tribute was held for the former Wesley student at the club’s semi-final match on Friday night.
“He was really growing into a young man, he was really starting to shine,’’ Mr Kondos said.
Bayside Acting Senior Sergeant Mick White urged parents to ensure their basketball rings were secure. “Take them off (brick walls) and put them on a secure pole – somewhere where it can’t happen. As strong as a brick wall looks, they’re not.”