FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — Former Homestead High School basketball star and Indiana Mr. Basketball Caleb Swanigan was laid to rest Thursday. Swanigan, who was a first round pick of the NBA Portland Trail Blazers following an All-American career at Purdue University died of natural causes on Monday, June 20 at the age of 25.
Funeral services were held at 11 a.m. at The Chapel, located on West Hamilton Road in Fort Wayne. His former coach at Purdue, Matt Painter, was in attendance.
Swanigan graduated from Homestead in 2015 after leading the Spartans to a state basketball title. He then enrolled at Purdue after initially committing to play basketball at Michigan State. While at Purdue racked up numerous awards, including 2017 Big Ten Player of the Year, 2017 1st Team Consensus All-American, 2017 Pete Newell Award, 2017 Basketball Times National Player of the Year, 2017 Lute Olson Award and 2017 Academic All-American. Following his sophomore season, he entered the 2017 NBA Draft and was chosen in the first round by the Portland Trailblazers. He spent three years in the NBA with the Blazers and the Sacramento Kings.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Swanigan decided against playing in the NBA bubble. He then pursued a music career.
In May of 2021, Swanigan pleaded guilty to misdemeanor Possession of Marijuana in Whitley Superior Court following a traffic stop in Columbia city in December 2020 where police found several pounds of marijuana in his SUV.
Swanigan, who experienced homelessness as a child before being adopted, eventually got a diploma in Educational History from Purdue. He also helped organize a fundraiser for homelessness and released music in 2019.
According to his obituary, preferred memorials are for Summit Church, located at 2320 Maumee Ave., Fort Wayne (IN 46803) or Boys and Girls Clubs of Fort Wayne, 2609 Fairfield Ave., Fort Wayne or Fort Wayne Rescue Mission.