19-year-old basketball player from Davidson County dies due to coronavirus complications

Coronavirus

THOMASVILLE, N.C. — Chad Dorill, a 19-year-old basketball player and recent graduate of Ledford High School in Thomasville, has died from COVID-19 complications, according to a statement from the Piedmont Pacers.

“The Piedmont Pacers family is devastated to learn of the passing of Chad Dorrill, due to complications from COVID-19,” the Pacers said. “This awful disease has taken this young man from everyone far too soon. Chad was an original member of the Piedmont Pacers and we first met him in 2013 after he and his family moved to North Carolina from Wisconsin. We quickly realized what a talented basketball player he was.”

The Piedmont Pacers say that he was a fierce competitor who helped the Pacers win many games. He finished as the Pacers’ all-time leading scorer and was a member of the 2018 USSSA National Championship team.

“Most importantly, Chad was beloved by all of his teammates and coaches and possessed all of the qualities that any parent would love to see in their child,” the Pacers said. “His parents, Robert and Susan, were a constant presence at Pacers games and their kindness and support helped to create a family-like atmosphere. Our hearts go out to them and we cannot imagine the pain they are going through right now.”

His family has offered this public statement, according to the Piedmont Pacers:

As our family suffers this incredible loss, we want to remind people to wear a mask and quarantine if you test positive even without symptoms. You have no idea who you can come into contact with that the virus affects differently. Chad was just incredibly tired for two weeks and little did we know it was secretly attacking his body in a way they have never seen before. The doctors said that Chad is the rarest 1-10,000,000 case but if it can happen to a super healthy 19-year old boy who doesn’t smoke, vape or do drugs, it can happen to anyone.

Davidson County Schools Superintendent Emily Lipe issued the following statement:

Chad Dorrill was a loved and well-respected member of the Ledford community and the Class of 2019. He was an All-Conference basketball player during his years at LHS, who was both competitive and kind. He was enrolled at Appalachian State University in hopes of becoming a physical therapist. Our deepest and most heartfelt sympathy is extended to Chad’s family, friends, and the entire Ledford community. 

Appalachian State University Chancellor Sheri Everts sent the following letter to faculty, staff, students, parents and families:

It is with the deepest sadness that I share with you that one of our students, Chad Dorrill, has died.

The hearts of the entire Appalachian Community are with Chad’s family and loved ones during this profoundly difficult and painful time. Tributes shared by friends and loved ones show the positive impact Chad had on the communities he loved and called home, which included App State and Boone.

Chad’s family has shared he had been diagnosed with COVID-19 earlier this month and suffered from later complications. Chad lived off-campus in Boone and all of his classes were online. When he began feeling unwell earlier this month, his mother encouraged him to come home, quarantine, and be tested for COVID-19.

After testing positive for COVID-19 in his home county, he followed isolation procedures and was cleared by his doctor to return to Boone. It was after his return to Boone that he had additional complications, was picked up by his family and hospitalized. His family’s wishes are for the university to share a common call to action so our entire campus community recognizes the importance of following COVID-19 safety protocols and guidelines.

Despite generally being at lower risk for severe illness, college-age adults can become seriously ill from COVID-19. As we approach the halfway mark to the last day of classes for the Fall semester, we are seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases in students. We have stringent cleaning and safety protocols in place on campus, and our students, faculty and staff are following the 3Ws by wearing face coverings, maintaining 6 feet of distance from one another and washing and sanitizing their hands and work stations. All of us must remain vigilant with our safety behaviors wherever we are in our community. We can flatten the curve, but to do so, we must persevere. From the smallest acts to the most important personal relationships, we must actively work each day to reduce the spread of this highly communicable disease.

Remember that gatherings are limited to 25 people indoors and 50 outdoors, and that in those settings, it is still critically important to maintain distance and wear face coverings. The university and the Town of Boone are enforcing these restrictions, and each of us must take seriously our personal responsibility as well. With grace and with kindness, let’s help one another to follow these important safety precautions. Information about prevention and testing options is available on the university’s coronavirus website, where we also post the weekly campus email updates.

Please know there are many resources to help you cope with grief and stress as well as to provide you with support in a confidential setting. If you or someone you know needs assistance, please reach out.

In condolences to his family, many have shared their memories of Chad and said, “I wear my mask for Chad.” Please let us all honor Chad and his contributions by taking care of ourselves and our community.

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