April 10, 2014

LAWT Wire Services


Massey died in his sleep early Tuesday morning at age 65.

Legendary former Jordan basketball coach and athletic director Ron Massey died in his sleep early Tuesday morning. He was 65.

The official cause of death is yet to be determined, but doctors told family members it was most likely from natural causes.

Massey has been a staple in the Long Beach athletic community for more than three decades. He coached and taught at Jordan from 1981 to 2010, serving as a physical education teacher and athletic director as well as basketball coach.

In January, Jordan renamed its basketball court “Ron Massey Court” in his honor.

“He was much more than a basketball coach,” Mario Jimenez, a former assistant for Massey and now principal at Lakewood High, said before the court dedication. “I saw him transform some wayward boys into young men. He seemed to have this aura about him, this patience. He just knew how to connect with some of the toughest kids from the neighborhood.”

Massey led the Panthers to three CIF titles, in 1991, 1992 and 1996. He also led Jordan to seven Moore League championships and won 503 games in his career. But on the plaque at his court dedication, he is first listed as a teacher.

Massey is survived by his wife, Shirley, his three sons, Ronald Jr., Anthony and Damien, and three grandchildren, Zach, Sierra and Jordan.

Category: Sports