The demons that haunted Dean “The Dream” Meminger for the better part of his adult life have parted company with him. Lord knows he fought those demons—and often by himself. You can bet he went down fighting these monstrous demons, who, in the end, won the raging battle that had lasted for years. When Meminger lost the battle, he quietly left us. That was his way. Meminger passed away on Friday, Aug. 23 at the age of 65.
An army of us loved this guy, who had a wide-mouthed grin and loved to gently touch you when he chatted with you. Many who always felt the warmth of his presence will now feel a void in their lives. He touched so many, who could feel the love leaking out of his body. It was a body that carried him to the heights of the one thing he loved dearer than life itself. A body filled with talent. All-City and all-American talent. National Basketball Association talent. Talent that never reached its height—and for a good reason.
His talent was hidden by Earl Monroe and Walt Frazier, who played ahead of him. But he was the greatest teammate one would ever want to have. The kids loved him. And bar-none, he was the greatest clinician ever. This guy could run a skills camp better than anyone these eyes have ever seen.
Not too long ago, he visited a playground and hung around for over three hours. He talked and demonstrated. He explained the nuisances of the game. And I dare anyone to show me a better clinician than the guy who left us.
No one will miss him more than Bob Williams. He was Williams’ “Little Bro.” When Meminger needed a pat on the back, when he needed unrelenting love, he would find Williams. But he recently decided to go it alone. But on the real side, Meminger will never be alone.
Meminger’s memorial service will be held on Friday, Aug. 30 at 10 a.m. at St. Charles Borromeo, 211 W. 141st St.