DePaul men’s basketball student manager dies after battle with cancer


DePaul student manager Aameer Sahi, who is battling a malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor, was at the game today. Richard Bodee I The DePaulia

DePaul men’s basketball student manager Aameer Sahi died Monday after battling a malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor, a form of sarcoma cancer, his father told the Chicago Tribune. Sahi was released from the hospital last week to go live in his home in Indiana to begin hospice care.

Sahi, 21, was diagnosed during his childhood with NF type 1, a condition characterized by skin pigmentation changes and tumor growth along nerves. However, he wasn’t limited by it for most of his life and only began showing signs of discomfort when he felt leg pain after a pickup basketball game in 2017 at DePaul. 

While being taken care of at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Sahi received constant visits from DePaul players and coaches, while also receiving encouraging messages from NBA players including former DePaul player Wilson Chandler and Jabari Parker. 

During their games towards the latter end of the season, DePaul players wore T-shirts that said  “I Know A Fighter” on the front and “#SahiStrong” on the back, as well as on the heels of their sneakers.

Sahi attended La Lumiere in La Porte, Ind. and his former school honored him in February with an “Aameer Sahi Night,” advertising the event with a photoshopped image of him as Green Lantern.

“Aameer is family and as part of all families we are beyond heartbroken,” DePaul head coach Dave Leitao said in a statement. “While he has went to be with God he leaves all of us with a gift of how to fight, to give, to laugh and to love. All around him wanted to give him support but each person walked away from a visit feeling like we just received a gift. 

“My deepest sympathies go out to his Mom Ruby and Dad Sonny as well as the many family members and countless friends who have shared and been touched by the most special of young men. Peace, Prayer and Blessings.”

After being hospitalized for a couple of months, Sahi was able to attend a DePaul home game on March 3 where he saw former Blue Demon guard Max Strus poured in a career-high 43-points to help his team defeat St. John’s 92-83 on senior day. 

“He continues to be an inspiration to himself, to his family, and to our family,” Leitao said after the game. “We will continue to help him with his fight and be there every step of the way until he conquers this and he’s doing phenomenal [in his battle]. We just have to continue to support him. His presence today if it didn’t pull at your heartstrings to the highest degree then there is something wrong with the insides of you.”

Funeral arrangements are currently pending.