CBA Commissioner Jay Ramsdell Is Presumed Dead in Crash

Associated Press

The commissioner of the Continental Basketball Assn. is among those missing and presumed dead in the crash of a United Airlines DC-10, another league official said Thursday.

Commissioner Jay Ramsdell, 25, and deputy commissioner Jerry Schemmel, 29, were on their way from Denver, Colo., to Columbus, Ohio, for the league's annual player draft when the jumbo jet crashed at the Sioux Gateway Airport as the pilot tried to make an emergency landing Wednesday afternoon.

Schemmel walked away from the crash, as did many of the other 293 people on board United flight 232. He said Ramsdell was sitting several rows behind him, near the tail of the aircraft.

"Just before we were getting ready to go down, I looked back and gave him a thumb's up sign," Schemmel said. "We had absolutely no idea what would happen."

Ramsdell became commissioner of the 12-team league Oct. 1. The CBA is a professional minor league that has a working agreement with the National Basketball Assn.

The CBA player draft went on as scheduled Thursday night in Columbus, Ohio.

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