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Tragedy And Triumph In A Single Day For Simeon Career Academy

By Justin Breen | June 10, 2016 4:13pm | Updated on June 17, 2016 11:23am
 Corey Ray (r.) and Saieed Ivey are both Simeon graduates
Corey Ray (r.) and Saieed Ivey are both Simeon graduates
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Louisville Athletics; Facebook

CHICAGO — Within a few hours Thursday, Simeon Career Academy dealt with the triumph and tragedy of two of its former alumni, Saieed Ivey and Corey Ray.

Ivey, a former star basketball player with the Wolverines, was shot to death on his 20th birthday in California on Thursday morning.

Thursday night, Ray, a standout baseball player at Louisville, was selected fifth overall by the Milwaukee Brewers in the Major League Baseball draft.

"It was difficult around campus today," Simeon athletics director Reginald Brock said Friday afternoon. "But in one sense, it was bitter for us with the loss of Saieed, but it's also kind of sweet because prom is [Saturday] and graduation is Tuesday. ... And there was a lot of talk about Corey being drafted, and an announcement went over the intercom system."

Brock said he hadn't spoken to members of Ivey's family, including his twin brother and sister — Shamir and Shemyra — who are both Simeon seniors.

Ray graduated in 2013, Ivey in 2014. They were friends, Brock said.

Brock said Simeon has a crisis team on campus for students who need counseling following Ivey's death. He said "mostly the seniors were touched and impacted" by Ivey's loss.

Simeon is known for its standout athletic program that routinely produces city and state champions, but Brock said athletics aren't the answer for solving today's problem with gun violence.

"Athletics has always been an outlet for us because it's something additional to just the norm, but I would be remiss if I did not say that we've kind of lost our way as a society," Brock said. "There's no promotion of family. We shouldn't just focus on athletics as an outlet, but trying to create a whole child, socially, educationally, morally and athletically.

"And we need to reinforce how to engage and how to resolve conflict without using violence."

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