Stephen Record’s memory lives on

I can’t claim to have known Stephen Record, the 16-year-old Conant High School student-athlete and upstanding citizen who tragically died in a car accident on Dec. 27, 2007, on his way to the Keene holiday basketball tournament. But I can share this brief story about how his legacy and memory live on and how fondly he’s remembered by members of the New Hampshire sports community.

About a month after starting my job as Sports Editor of the Ledger-Transcript, I made my way to Henniker for a weekly pick-up basketball open gym. Among the players that night were several former John Stark basketball players. Between games, we got to chatting, and when I mentioned my new job involved covering Conant High School, one player’s eyes lit up. He knew about the undefeated seasons, the championships and the year-in, year-out dedication to basketball that Conant prides itself on, but he only had one question on his mind to ask me.

“Did you know Stephen Record?”

He went on to recall Record’s abilities on the court, remembering him as a tough competitor and a natural athlete with a great sense of sportsmanship, a player that anyone would be lucky to have as a teammate.

Conant takes the court tomorrow night at 7 p.m. for another Keene holiday tournament, six years to the day of Record’s passing. No doubt emotions will be running high in the gym for those players, fans, parents and tournament organizers who remember Record and what he meant to the community.

His legacy will be honored once again at the end of the tourney, when the Stephen Record Memorial Sportsmanship Award is handed out to the tournament’s outstanding player. And, his memory will live on through his former teammates and opponents and for all those who think of only one name and one question when you bring up Conant basketball:

“Did you know Stephen Record?”

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