"The home of hometown heroes"

Steelers' Family Suffers Tragic Loss

 By David Bonner
Special to BSW

For the second time in less than a month, the Bellevue Steelers are saying goodbye to a beloved family member. 

Just a few weeks ago the Steelers lost Darryl Hammond after a long battle with ALS and now young Selik Thompson is gone after a tragic auto accident in Alabama. 

Selik, only 10-years-old, was killed when the family’s 2006 Dodge Durango blew a tire, ran off the road and overturned in the median. 

The accident happened on I-65 south near Georgiana in Butler County, Alabama. Five other family members also suffered injuries, including his older sister, Ayana, a former Bellevue Steelers cheerleader, who is recovering in a Birmingham hospital. 

The family was on their way to visit their 97 year-old grandmother in Mobile, AL when the accident occured. They had relocated from Alabama to Tennessee just a few years ago, and settled in nicely with the Bellevue Steelers family. 

Selik was an outstanding young man whose passion was football. He was anxiously looking forward to the upcoming season. 

A two-year starter for the Steelers, Thompson excelled at linebacker, defensive end, tight end, and running back. He was consistently one of the best players on the team, almost always leading the team in tackles. 

Selik was dearly loved by his family, friends, and teammates. His father Otis undoubtedly was his biggest fan. Otis would do whatever it took to be as close to the game as possible, often serving on the chain crew during games just so he could be close to Selik. 

They were inseparable on game day and Otis was one of the most fun-loving, passionate parents I’ve ever been around. 

He would have the Steelers fans hyped up during the games and brought a lot of energy to the field. Selik fed off his father’s energy and always played with tremendous passion. 

He was also blessed with outstanding leadership skills. Coach Robert Abernathy remembers, “He was the leader of our team and didn’t even know it. It just came natural to him.”

 For me personally, Selik was one of my favorite players, not because  of his natural abilities, but because of his composure. 

He reminded me of the calm before the storm. He didn’t say much before the game, but when the game started he played with absolute relentlessness.

He was a great teammate and very unselfish. He never asked to play a certain position, and he would do whatever he was asked to do and do it well. 

He was so very coachable and a sponge for information. I’ll never forget every time I would pull Selik aside and give him instructions, he was always looking me directly in the eyes, completely focused. 

He was always wanting to improve and be the best. But to me, the best part of Selik was his smile. You could see his amazing smile a mile away, it was extremely contagious. 

Coaching young men and women is the most gratifying thing I’ve ever done in my life. Selik was like a son to me, and I will never get over losing him. He will always be dearly loved by his Bellevue Steelers family. 

The Bellevue Steelers will be establishing a scholarship fund in honor of Selik Thompson. The Steelers would like to thank all the organizations and individuals for their tremendous support, donations, and words of encouragement. 

If you would like to help, please send donations to the scholarship fund or to the Thompson family to: Bellevue Steelers, P.O. Box 210395, Nashville, TN 37221. There is also a Go Fund Me link set up on our Facebook page. Please visit www.facebook.com/bellevuesteelers to contribute. 

Funeral arrangements are still being finalized.