Monday, December 14, 1987

Oxford Eagle: Ole Miss athlete found dead

Eagle Staff Writer

An Ole Miss sophomore on a basketball scholarship was found dead on campus early yesterday morning, according to the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff’s Department.

A campus maintenance worker found the body of Kevin Gilmore, age 20, in a grassy area along Hathorn Road near Creekmore Boulevard, according to sheriff’s department investigators. They said the cause of death has yet to be determined pending results of an autopsy performed Sunday.

Gilmore, who grew up in Oxford, received a full scholarship as a recruit for the basketball team. As a freshman he played mostly as a substitute point guard, but this year Gilmore started and went on to score 23 points in the Dec. 7 contest against Southeastern Louisiana. Ole Miss won the game, 80-43.

“Kevin was a promising young athlete,” said Jared Pringle, Ole Miss assistant basketball coach. “We’re all shocked and saddened.”

Gilmore failed to show up for practice on Friday as well as Saturday’s home game against Tulsa, according to Pringle. Pringle said teammates and coaches had attempted to contact Gilmore’s parents in Oxford to ask about his whereabouts, but they hadn't been reached.

Gilmore’s parents, Donald and Judith Gilmore of Oxford, declined requests for comment, saying only they will hold a private funeral service for their son this week.

The exact timing of Gilmore’s death is still under investigation, according to the sheriff’s department.

In addition to playing on the team and taking a full load of courses, Gilmore worked several nights a week at The Juke Joint in Oxford to help defray living expenses, said his girlfriend, Carly Brock, also an Ole Miss sophomore.

Reached at her dormitory yesterday, Brock said Gilmore’s busy schedule never took him to the outer reaches of campus where his body was found.

“He pretty much had his blinders on,” Brock said. “Most of the time he was either at practice or work, or studying. He was incredibly dedicated and loyal.”

Brock said Gilmore’s athletic feats were especially extraordinary because he had Type I diabetes, a condition she said he managed carefully.

Investigators declined to comment on Gilmore’s medical status or whether his alleged diabetes may have contributed to his death.

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