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Cager Bobby Parks dies

American basketball player Bobby Parks Sr., the only seven-time Best Import awardee of the Philippine Basketball Association, died Saturday afternoon after a long battle with laryngeal (throat) cancer,  at the San Juan de Dios hospital. He was 51-years-old. A former Memphis State University star player, the 6-foot-5 Parks was picked in the third round of the 1984 National Basketball Association Draft, but was never signed. He, however, found tremendous success as an import in the PBA, where he won a record Best Import awards. He married a Filipina. In September 2009, Parks was inducted in the  PBA Hall of Fame. Parks debuted in the PBA for San Miguel Beer in 1987, and later played for the Shell Turbo Chargers. Parks moved back to the Philippines with his family in 2010.  He accepted an offer to be the assistant athletic director of a new-look National University, where his son, Bobby Ray Parks Jr., suited  up  as the team’s top player. Parks Jr. was twice named as the Most Valuable Player of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines. The elder Parks had a stint as an assistant coach of the Petron Blaze Boosters, and coached the San Miguel Beermen in the Asean Basketball League, leading the team to the finals in the squad’s maiden season. He was supposed to coach the team again for its second year,  but he had to hand the reigns over to former PBA player Leo Austria as his health deteriorated.
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