A majority of the time, Geramiah Jett is the tallest among opposing players in the Junior Grizzlies basketball league.
In her brief time on the amateur circuit, she has developed a sharp mid-range jumper.
Take, for instance, the nifty play Jett made in the waning moments of her eight-and-under team’s recent season finale at Southaven Community Church’s gymnasium.
Jett fielded an outlet pass from one of her teammates, took a single bounce then drained a baseline jumper that trimmed her team’s deficit to 12 points.
That Jett’s team couldn’t mount a comeback doesn’t compare to the tumultuous events 11 years ago left her mother, Reba Jett, wondering if she would ever have children.
Among the reasons Jett feels it is essential to aid her daughter in sharpening her basketball skills is that she never sensed that Geramiah would live to witness her first birthday.
That’s because a few years before Geramiah was born, Jett had to bury three of her infant children hours after giving birth to them.
Having had each baby prematurely, Jett — who was residing in St. Louis at the time — endured what doctors described as complications of carrying a baby the full term.
“I guess it just took time to get out and be confident to tell my story,” Jett told MemphiSport. “We see how God has blessed us with (Geramiah). (Her school) recognizes her like she’s a star. We see how much she has flourished.”
Jett, of course, is a far cry from the frightening occurrences that transpired in the aftermath of Jett’s previous three pregnancies.
Jett gave birth to her first premature baby in January 2003. Shockingly, her firstborn lived for roughly 90 minutes. In September of that same year, she gave birth to another premature child, who lived for approximately one hour.
Saddled by disappointment, Jett, who had custody of her niece, Erica Watkins, was determined not to give up on giving birth to her own child.
In 2004, she had a third premature child, who lived for a little more than an hour.
“It was very disturbing,” Jett said of the deaths of her children. “Nothing but prayer, really, is what got us through.”
Fortunately for Jett, Geramiah, a student at DeSoto Primary School in Southaven, became was described as a “miracle child.”
That’s because the eight-year-old was born on November 1, 2005, at 34 weeks, or approximately one month before Jett was able to carry her for the full term. Looking at the energetic, vibrant Geramiah today, it would be hard pressed for anyone to tell that she endured an array of struggles at birth.
For starters, this tall, lanky kid is just as athletic and resilient as her peers, especially on the hardwood.
“It’s a total difference,” said Jett, when asked to assess her latest child birth. “When I went through the other losses, I was numb. But getting (Geramiah) here wiped that away.”
Nearly nine years removed from having giving birth to Geramiah, doctors convinced Jett to write a book in which she recalled the events surrounding the birth of her child. The title of the book, in fact, is rather fitting: “The Book of Geramiah.”
Jett completed and released the book last summer, a testament, of sorts she said, of the progress her daughter has made over the years.
“It just seems like she represents all the babies in one,” Jett said with a smile. “She just has this strength. Her personality is strong. She has an outspoken spirit. She has a new level of confidence. I don’t know where she gets this from.”
To get a glimpse of Geramiah’s “new level” of confidence, look no further than her sharp, mid-range baseline jumper.