NYC Parks Unveils The Newly Named Cesar Sanchez Jr. Basketball Courts At General McArthur Park On Staten Island

Andrew J. Lanza

June 25, 2018

The basketball courts have been named in memory of the slain athlete and youth coach

"Cesar Sanchez Jr. was an energetic, kind and talented young man who made a positive difference in our community. His passion for sports, particularly basketball, was infectious. As a player and coach, he sought to mentor others. The 20 years that Cesar spent here with us was all too short. This basketball court will serve to ensure that Cesar's memory will help to inspire others. I remain committed to seeing New York enact Cesar's Law, which I have authored, to help safeguard our community from future senseless murders, so that other families never have to suffer in the way this family has suffered." Senator Lanza 

NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP, joined New York State Assembly Member Nicole Malliotakis, Staten Island Deputy Borough President Ed Burke, Maris Sanchez, mother of Cesar Sanchez Jr., Cesar’s family and community members for the name dedication ceremony of the Cesar Sanchez Jr. basketball courts at General McArthur Park on Friday, June 15.

“It is my honor and privilege to name the basketball courts at General McArthur Park after Cesar Sanchez Jr.,” said Commissioner Silver. “Cesar’s life was too brief, but it was certainly impactful. I believe that through the efforts of his family and the community that cherished him, his legacy will be cemented on these courts and in our hearts.”

"Cesar Sanchez Jr. was an energetic, kind and talented young man who made a positive difference in our community. His passion for sports, particularly basketball, was infectious. As a player   and coach, he sought to mentor others. The 20 years that Cesar spent here with us was all too short,” said New York State Senator Andrew Lanza. “This basketball court will serve to ensure   that Cesar's memory will help to inspire others. I remain committed to seeing New York enact Cesar's Law, which I have authored, to help safeguard our community from future senseless murders, so that other families never have to suffer in the way this family has suffered."

 “Thank you to the New York City Parks Department for dedicating this park to Cesar Sanchez Jr., who was taken from us way before his time,” said Assembly Member Malliotakis. “Cesar loved this park and basketball and used both to mentor young children. Now he will be remembered every time someone walks through this park’s gates.”

 “Cesar Sanchez was a young man tragically taken in the prime of his life. Naming basketball courts in his honor that will serve his home community is a wonderful testament to his memory,” said New York City Council Member Steven Matteo.

 “Cesar represents everything that New York Center for Interpersonal Development (NYCID) does every day. He was a young man who needed a boost and who gave back to his community and is a perfect representation of how our organization is able to support the community and will continue to live the legacy of Cesar and ensure that his name lives on forever,” said NYCID’s Senior Director of Workforce Initiatives Michael DeVito.

 Previously unnamed, the basketball courts at General McArthur Park will be named in memory of Cesar Sanchez Jr. Cesar, a Staten Island native. He was 20 years old when he was shot and killed in 2014 near his home. He was a talented athlete with a passion for basketball, who spent countless hours at the basketball courts in this park both as a player and a youth coach. Since his passing, his family and local community members have enacted a number of programs in his name including, the “Forever Cesar Day Annual Basketball Tournament” hosted at these very courts.  

 Currently, plans for the reconstruction of the Cesar Sanchez Jr. basketball courts are underway, and construction is expected to begin early next year.