Popular Harlem basketball coach dies in crash

Photo: GETTY

NEW YORK (AP) -- A Harlem basketball coach who started a non-profit league to benefit disadvantaged youngsters has died in a Manhattan motorcycle accident.

Floyd "Skip" Branch died after his motorcycle struck a cement divider Saturday afternoon.

The Daily News reported Monday that his death shocked the community where he was revered for his work with the league he created nearly a quarter century ago: the NYC Bombsquad Basketball Classic.

The newspaper quoted his brother, Kent Branch, a Georgia pastor, as saying Branch had taught basketball and mentored thousands of young people.

The Daily News said the accident happened just after Floyd Branch visited a loved one in hospice care and as he headed to meet his wife for a friend's 60th birthday celebration.

About 200 mourners grieved outside his Harlem home Sunday.