The touching story behind one high school’s charity basketball tournament


It was the spring of 2009 when Chip and David Smith met and bonded under the most difficult of situations – they were both undergoing valiant fights against stage four cancer.

Chip, a Battalion Chief at the Ontario Fire Department and David, a History teacher and basketball Coach at Los Osos High School, became brothers as they underwent chemotherapy for colorectal cancer.

It was from that shared experience and struggle with cancer that David got the idea to host a charity basketball tournament, pitting various fire departments against each other.

In February, the Hoops for Hope Tournament came to life when the Ontario, Upland, Chino Valley and Rancho Cucamonga Fire Departments all competed.

And although David’s body responded well to the treatment, Chip’s body did not. He passed away hours after the tournament that he inspired took place.

To learn more about this touching story, watch the full segment below or see it air nationwide on California Life with Heather Dawson.