Longtime National Director of Biddy Basketball Firmin Simms died today in his New Orleans home.
He was 91.
Multiple sources confirmed the news to The Gazette this afternoon, saying that it is believed that Simms died of natural causes.
Simms is a youth sports legend in the city of New Orleans, but his reach wrapped the state of Louisiana like a blanket, earring him induction in the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame.
He coached in countless tournaments in our area in his younger years, then helped put on several others later in life as Biddy's National Director.
Under his watch, South Lafourche Biddy Basketball was awarded the rights to host two National Tournaments, and Thibodaux Biddy has become the home of U8 Nationals for countless years.
Damien St. Pierre, President of South Lafourche Biddy, said Simms' passing marks a tough time for youth sports in our state.
"Mr. Simms has been the backbone of Biddy Basketball since I’ve been involved as a kid playing and now in my current role," St. Pierre said. "His values, vision and beliefs will live on though the game of Biddy Basketball. Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family at this time."
Simms was a legendary youth baseball and basketball coach in the city, and his teams won countless games and high-level championships.
On the basketball hardwood, Simms coached 10 National Championship Biddy Basketball teams, and he was also named National Amateur Baseball Coach of the Year in 1999 for his work on the diamond.
Simms is survived by wife, Jackie, four daughters and a son. Simms' first wife passed away earlier in life.