Terry Wayne Layton


photo of Terry Wayne Layton -2015

Terry Wayne Layton -2015

Terry Wayne Layton went to be with the Lord on Saturday December 1st, 2018. Terry, 71 years old, was born in Oakland, California on Aug 29, 1947 to Charles Wayne and Doris Marie Layton. He was the middle child between Cheryl (Burkholder) and Rick Layton.  Although he left Northern California to attend Pasadena Nazarene College and Mankato State University, he always considered the bay area his home. He married Nancy Sonnenberg 49 years ago on Sept 6, 1969. They had two daughters, Teralynn (married to Chad Swank) and Jamie (married to Cory Seefurth), as well as 4 grandchildren – Makaila, Cole, Cassie, and Leah.

Terry found a passion for basketball at a young age. He began as a player on the playgrounds and gyms of Richmond and Oakland. He had an instinct for the nearest pickup game and could always recite stats from some of his better games. A person’s skill on the court was always more important to him than the color of one’s skin or even where the game was located.

Coaching was always his goal. His time playing on Pasadena College’s basketball team transitioned him from a player to seeing the game as a coach. He spent time breaking down those college games on the bus ride home with his college coach. At its formation, he immediately joined the National Association of Basketball Coaches; he was member number 4. He attended the NCAA Final Four more years than he didn’t. He looked forward to networking with all the coaches and attending the meetings and events more than the actual final and semi-final games. Terry coached basketball at Northwest Nazarene College for 7 years and Azusa Pacific University for 6 years. He also coached at colleges and junior colleges in Oklahoma, Nebraska, Colorado, Washington, North Dakota, the Virgin Islands. He coached semi-professional teams in 3 different US leagues, professional teams in China, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico and Taiwan and National teams in Mexico, Panama and Qatar. Terry started Basketball Connections and helped other coaches to network and find jobs. Representing the Federation of International Basketball Association (FIBA), he gave clinics for both athletes and coaches across the globe due to his knowledge of international basketball. In 2010, he began working for Nike to help discover talent and grow basketball in South America. Terry provided scouting service to NBA teams such as the Bulls, Mavericks, Heat, Thunder and Clippers.  He saw the world with basketball as a player, coach, talent scout, consultant, short-term missionary, and mentor. He traveled to 72 countries throughout his lifetime and accomplished his goal to visit every Spanish-speaking nation. In his final years he made Colorado Springs his home. He enjoyed his Bible study, FCA group, Coach’s coffee group, going for walks and seeing the mountain views.

Terry “co-existed” with cancer for almost a decade. He faced his cancer with positivity as he continued to live his life to its fullest and encourage others in all circumstances. After his surgery and treatment in 2009, he referred to himself as Captain Can-Soar and created the quote, “After cancer, you can soar with CHRIST”. His spirit will be missed by many. He is survived by those who call him Husband, brother, Dad, Grandpa or Papa T, Uncle, friend, mentor, and a whole lot of people who call him “Coach”.


Family and Friends are gathering for a HOOPLA in honor of Terry.

December 29th, 2018
Springs First Church
4120 East Fountain Boulevard
Colorado Springs, CO 80916

In honor of his love for color, we encourage you to wear bright colors, and Nike’s are acceptable.

Please let us know if you’re planning to be there in person:

The memorial will also be live streamed at:

3 Responses to “Terry Wayne Layton”

  • Linda Lazzeretti says:

    I knew there was something special about Terry when I met him a few years back at a reunion of his fellow basketball classmates in junior and senior high school. I had no idea, though, how special he really was and how accomplished he was and passionate about his work in coaching and mentoring so many along the way. His story here is a great one I’ll share in both Richmond and Oakland schools with teachers and students with whom I work

  • John Davidson says:

    Terry and I were friends for 60 years. We grew up in the same neighborhood, went to the same schools, played on some of the same basketball teams ( he was better) and both wound up in Colorado where we got together often. Our wives sometimes joined us. At lunch one day, Terry told me he was battling cancer but asked me not to share that information with others we both knew. He was too busy living his life to become the object of pity. Terry should be remembered for his achievements. I miss my friend and remember the good days.

  • Sarone Kennedy II says:

    Coach Layton gave an opportunity via Basketball to Me via a phone call and a visit which in turn has helped changed the trajectory of so Many lives via basketball in the Caribbean I am Grateful for his insight, support and Mentorship. Thank you. Blessings.

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