LAWTON, Okla. (AP) _ When Army Spc. Stephen Michael Scott was feeling down, he would play basketball to take his mind off his troubles.
So it was only natural that relatives who are grieving his death picked up Scott's old basketball as they tried to cope with their loss.
``Yesterday, we passed around a basketball that was Stephen's favorite basketball,'' Adam Forest Scott of Oklahoma City said in funeral services for his brother Tuesday at the First Christian Church in Lawton. ``It was old and faded and worn out.''
Scott, 21, died of a gunshot wound Aug. 23, in Iraq near Al Fallujah. Scott was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 2nd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment based out of Fort Carson, Colo. His death, from a ``non-hostile gunshot incident,'' is under investigation.
``Stephen Michael Scott was my best friend, closest confidant and my hero,'' his brother said before about 250 people in the church. The church bell rang in honor of the fallen soldier.
``Stephen grew up loving sports, mainly basketball.
``He was trying to excel in order to be a pro basketball player and to be honest with you, I believe he would have made it.''
Following the funeral service, the flag-draped coffin was taken to Fort Sill National Cemetery in Elgin for burial.