LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18)– Over the weekend, a woman who had once been a star basketball player at Lexington Christian Academy was murdered in Kansas City, Missouri.
“Sher was the best shooter I ever coached. She could flat out shoot. She might have been the hardest worker I’ve ever coached. This was a girl that after two and a half hours, or two hours and fifteen minutes, she would go to the Y and work on her game,” said Jason Seamands, who had coached Courtney Clifton at Lexington Christian Academy.
Clifton was a starting shooter guard in her sophomore year. Seamands said she was a key player for Lexington Christian Academy’s state title run in 2007.
“We named her our captain, but I can tell you, she was always a leader,” said Seamands. “She was a strong personality, people knew how dedicated she was, what a worker she was,” said Seamands.
Clifton was not only a leader on the court, but also in the classroom. She was a true student-athlete with dreams of going into the field of medicine. She excelled in high school and went on to play and study at Western Kentucky and Campbellsville University, despite some health troubles on the court.
“She comes by the bench, runs by the bench and says, ‘Coach, I see butterflies.’ I said, ‘Courtney, keep playing, what are you talk…’ Another minute later, ‘Coach I see butterflies,'” Seamands explained.
Moments later, she had a seizure. Doctors quickly found out she had epilepsy.
Her coach said that days later, she was back on the court, leading them to the state championship.
Years later, Clifton went into medicine and at 27-years-old, she was a nurse in Kansas City, Missouri, studying to be an anesthesiologist. She even got married a few years ago.
This weekend, police said she was killed by one of her close friends in a murder-suicide shooting.
“When I heard that she had passed, it was just, you know, there’s a void there. She was just a beautiful soul,” said Seamands. “She’ll never be forgotten, in my heart, she’ll always be a part of my story. She impacted my life in a great way and I know she impacted other people as well.”