Hoops Hero Memorial | VideoAlexander Gorney | 4/9/2012
"He was such a good basketball player because he was the typical gym rat, first guy in the gym last one out, shoot a thousand shots a day," said his brother Travis Albers.
Last year Tanner passed away from stomach cancer. His family hopes this memorial basketball tournament brings comfort to the many who love him.
"A lot of his friends wanted to honor him as well as our family did because he was such a good role model for kids and he was good friends with all the guys that played basketball in this basketball circuit," Travis said.
Tanner put UTTC basketball on the map, leading the team to the elite eight in the 1998 National Junior College Athletic Association Championships. Tanner and his brother went on to play together at NCAA Division I Delaware State. But Tanner`s family is quick to point out that he was more than just a basketball player.
"Tanner was a unique individual, passion for basketball was second to no one, he played basketball more than anything, always helped out with kids, helped out family members, you short cash, he would give you the cash to get home, just all around he was a great individual," said brother Butch Sinette.
Hundreds stacked the UTTC gym to watch 20 teams play a game close to Tanner`s heart.
"You know we`re all here to play basketball and compete, a lot of players and teams here know Tanner really well and you know everybody wants to win but when everybody leaves here they`re going to remember Tanner," said former coach Rusty Gillette.
Tanner passed away a little more than a year ago, but family and friends say this tournament was the best way to honor a great friend, brother, and basketball player.
"Just a great individual, I really miss him, it`s been a year and a couple months and not a day goes by that we don`t think about him," Sinette said.
With the success of this year`s tournament, Tanner`s family says this is a tribute they want to see go on for years.
Tanner also played basketball at the University of Mary. His number, 34, was retired by United Tribes when he was inducted into the Thunderbird Hall of Fame.