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Eggers book event set Friday in Medford

Portland author Kerry Eggers will appear at BricktownE Brewery Friday to discuss his latest book, “Jerome Kersey: Overcoming the Odds.”

The book event, which is free and open to the public, is from 5-7 p.m. BricktownE Brewery is located at 44 South Central Avenue in Medford.

At about 5:30, Eggers will talk about the book project, Kersey’s life and career and the Portland Trail Blazers of the early ‘90s. A Q&A session will follow, with Eggers fielding questions about Kersey, the Blazers or anything sports-related.

Copies of the rags-to-riches life story of one of the most successful and popular players in Trail Blazer history will be available, personalized by Eggers if desired. Also available will be copies of his previous two books, “Civil War Rivalry: Oregon vs. Oregon State football” and “Jail Blazers.”

The biography of Kersey, who died in 2015 at age 52 of a pulmonary embolism, was released in October by Dementi Milestone Publishing of Manakin-Sabot, Va.

Raised by grandparents in rural Virginia in the 1960’s and ‘70s, Kersey was among the least likely of all eventual NBA stars. A late-bloomer as a basketball player, he was overlooked by college scouts. He signed with Longwood College in nearby Farmville, Va., which was just making the transition from NCAA Division III to Division II. Kersey became a four-year starter and a small-college All-American but received little notice from NBA scouts. He was chosen with the 46th pick and taken in the second round of the 1984 draft by the Portland Trail Blazers.

Kersey, one of the game’s greatest dunkers and high-energy players through his long career, played 11 of his 17 NBA seasons in Portland. He was a starter and key cog on a Portland team that reached the NBA Finals in both 1990 and ’92, and as a veteran reserve won a championship ring with the San Antonio Spurs in ’99.

Kersey’s story is one of perseverance and also of making a deep commitment to community and civic contributions. After his retirement as a player, he served many years as an ambassador to the Blazers and was working as the club’s director of alumni relations when he passed away.

Proceeds from the sales of the general edition of the book go to the Jerome Kersey ’84 men’s basketball scholarship at Longwood University in Farmville, Va.

Eggers, who retired in 2020 after 45 years writing sports for Portland newspapers, is a six-time winner of the Oregon Sportswriter of the Year Award. This is his eighth book. The others: Blazers Profiles (1991), Against the World (1993, with co-author Dwight Jaynes), Wherever You May Be: The Bill Schonely Story (1999), Clyde “The Glide” Drexler: My Life in Basketball (2004), Oregon State University Football Vault (2009), The Civil War Rivalry: Oregon vs. Oregon State (2014) and Jail Blazers: How the Portland Trail Blazers Became the Bad Boys of Basketball (2018).

Kerry Eggers