|Born||January 30, 1964|
|Died||July 19, 1989 (aged 25)|
|Cause of death||Plane crash|
|Occupation||Commissioner of the Continental Basketball Association|
Jay Ramsdell (January 30, 1964 – July 19, 1989) was the Commissioner of the Continental Basketball Association (CBA), a professional men's basketball league in the United States, from 1988 until his death.
As a ninth-grade student in 1978, Ramsdell interviewed the owner of the expansion team the Maine Lumberjacks for an article in his high school newspaper. The owner was so impressed, he invited Jay to "help out" the team on Opening Night. That night Jay was assigned to the scorer's table, and by the end of the game he was the Statistical Crew Chief. Within a week, Jay had assumed the role of the team's Director of Public Relations.
Ramsdell remained with the 'Jacks until his high school graduation in 1982 when he was hired by CBA commissioner Jim Drucker as the league's Administrative Assistant. Within a year, he was the league's Director of Operations.
He returned to Bangor, Maine, to serve as the General Manager for the Maine Windjammers in 1985/86. After that franchise folded after one season, at the age of 20, Ramsdell returned to the CBA front office as Deputy Commissioner.
Ramsdell and Deputy Commissioner Jerry Schemmel were on United Airlines Flight 232 on July 19, 1989, and traveling from the league headquarters in Denver to the player draft in Columbus, Ohio, when the plane crash-landed in Sioux City, Iowa, after losing all hydraulics. Of the 296 passengers and crew on board the flight, Ramsdell was among the 111 passengers who were killed, while Schemmel survived.
In 1989, the CBA league championship trophy was named the Jay Ramsdell Trophy to honor his memory.
- Commissioners, The CBA Museum, Retrieved 2018-12-27
- "Continental Basketball Association, AAA to the NBA: 1985-86 Official Guide & Register", (CBA, 1985)
- The CBA Museum
- Schemmel, Jerry; Simpson, Kevin (1996). Chosen to Live: The Inspiring Story of a Flight 232 Survivor. Victory Publishing. ISBN 0-9652086-5-6.
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