‘He was a great player, but even better person’: Former Spokane Indians player shot and killed in Nebraska

Credit: Creighton University

SPOKANE, Wash.– The Spokane Indians are mourning the loss of one of their former players.

Chris Gradoville, 37 was shot and killed in front of a house in Omaha, Nebraska this week. He has played 15 games for the team in 2007.

The Spokane Indian’s President Chris Duff released this statement:

“We have had a lot of players come through Spokane during my time, very few left the impression Chris Gradoville did. He was a great player, but even better person, just someone you enjoyed being around. After his retirement from baseball, Chris moved back to Spokane and married Nikki Stokes, one of our front office team members. Together they remained an important piece of the Spokane Indians family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all that are impacted by the loss of Chris Gradoville.”

Gradoville was currently volunteering at Creighton University as its Director of Baseball Operations. He joined Creighton’s baseball staff as its director of operations in the fall of 2020. He had been a former Jays’ player from 2004 to 2007.

The Associated Press reported he was shot in front of a house he had just recently renovated and sold to a realty company. He was renting it out to the man accused of shooting him.

That man is Ladell Thornton, 43, according to police. He is charged with first-degree murder and weapons.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.