Gene Vance

Gene Vance

Birth
Clinton, DeWitt County, Illinois, USA
Death 16 Feb 2012 (aged 88)
Champaign, Champaign County, Illinois, USA
Burial Champaign, Champaign County, Illinois, USA
Memorial ID 85086681 · View Source
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Professional Basketball Player. For five seasons (1947 to 1952), he played at the guard and forward positions in the Basketball Association of America and National Basketball Association with the Chicago Stags, Tri-Cities Blackhawks and Milwaukee Hawks. Born Ellis Eugene Vance, he attended Clinton High School (Illinois) and played collegiate basketball at the University of Illinois. While with the Fighting Illini, he was a component of their squad dubbed the "Whiz Kids" (not to be confused with the 1950 National League Pennant-winning Phillies team of the same nickname) which was comprised of future Hall of Fame NBA player Andy Phillip, Jack Smiley and Art Mathisen. During the early 1940s, the Fighting Illini captivated the NCAA as they captured two consecutive Big Ten titles (1942 and 1943). Vance individually received All-American honorable mention three-times. The school was on the threshold of greatness as one of the best collegiate basketball teams in the country when World War II intervened and Vance along with his teammates joined the military. Upon returning home, he concluded his college athletics and was selected by the Chicago Stags of the BAA (the precursor to the NBA). He yielded a career-high 575 points during the 1948-1949 season. In 174 regular season BAA and NBA games, he compiled 1,437 points. Vance would serve with the military once again during the Korean War and earn a Bronze Star. He returned to the University of Illinois and served at various capacities including Athletic Director. He was honored when his uniform number 25 was retired by the school in 2008.

Bio by: C.S.


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: C.S.
  • Added: 16 Feb 2012
  • Find A Grave Memorial 85086681
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Gene Vance (23 Feb 1923–16 Feb 2012), Find A Grave Memorial no. 85086681, citing Roselawn Cemetery, Champaign, Champaign County, Illinois, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .