Alexander C. “Alex” Bement, a naturally gifted athlete who excelled at lacrosse and enjoyed coaching middle- and high-school students in the sport, was found dead May 4 at his girlfriend’s Washington apartment. The former resident of Phoenix in Baltimore County was 27.
The cause of death, according to his parents, William Martin Bement and Elizabeth “Liz” Bement of Fells Point, was a drug overdose.
“He was fiercely compassionate, competitive, loving and loyal,” his mother, wrote in an emailed biographical profile of her son.
“He was an amazing son, brother and friend, with a great joy for living, whose life ended way to soon due to the struggle of addiction,” Ms. Bement wrote. “We are sharing this in the hopes that this will encourage at least one person who is struggling to reach out for help.”
“We don’t look at it as an addiction; it is a disease,” his father said, in a telephone interview.
Eddie Stose, a longtime friend and lacrosse player who had attended Loyola High School with Mr. Bement, recalled how forthright he was in discussing his addiction.
“He was always willing to talk about it and when he met someone for the first time, he’d say, ‘I’m a recovering addict,’ ” said Mr. Stose, a Washington resident who works in cybersecurity.
“He was a person who owned and admitted to his mistakes, travails and tribulations,” he said. “That’s who he was. He put it out there and meant it.”
Alexander Caldwell Bement, whose father is a developer and whose mother is a Realtor, was born in Baltimore and raised in the Phoenix neighborhood of Baltimore County.
Mr. Bement first became interested in lacrosse when he was in kindergarten and learned the sport while a member of the Sparks Recreation Council.
He blossomed as a lacrosse player and when he was a sophomore at Loyola High School, he was a starting varsity defenseman. His senior year, he was team captain and was named Defensive Player of the Year, and helped guide the team to Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association championships in 2007 and 2008.
In 2009, Mr. Bement was First-team All-MIAA, All Towson Times, and a finalist for the C. Markland Kelly Award.
“He was just an incredible athlete and for my money, the best defenseman I had ever seen play,” Mr. Stose said.
After graduating from Loyola in 2009, Mr. Bement began his college studies at the University of Pennsylvania, where he played on its Division 1 lacrosse team.
As a freshman in 2010, he appeared in 10 games, and in 2011 “saw action against Villanova (I3/12), Princeton (3/19 and Cornell (3/26),” according to University of Pennsylvania Athletics.
After withdrawing from Penn in 2011, he moved to Aspen, Colo., where he was defensive coach for Aspen High School’s lacrosse team and helped take them to the championship. He also worked in telemarketing and was assistant manager for the Aspen Skiing Co.
While living in Aspen, he learned Telemark skiing, a technique in which the skier assumes a squatting posture while allowing him to make turns at controlled speed.
From 2015 to 2016, he attended the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn., where he played on its lacrosse team and helped take it to the 2016 championship game.
Mr. Bement took home many awards that season including the Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association Division 2 First Team All American and the Upper Midwest Lacrosse Conference Division 2 Defensive Player of the Year.
While living in Minnesota, Mr. Bement was assistant head varsity lacrosse coach from 2014 to 2016 for Washburn High School in Minneapolis, and during that same time period, was program director of the Homegrown Lacrosse Club of Greater Minneapolis-St. Paul, where he also coached middle school and high school students.
Nikolas A. Colpitts became close friends with Mr. Bement when the two worked together at Homegrown Lacrosse and Mr. Colpitts coached lacrosse at St. Thomas.
“When Alex was thinking of going back to school, I was coaching at St. Thomas at the time and told him he should come to UST and play lacrosse,” Mr. Colpitts wrote in a Facebook posting. “Alex was an absolute stud and a wonderful teammate.”
In 2016, Mr. Bement returned to Baltimore, where he took a job in outside sales with Forbes Design Center and since 2018 had been a customer success manager with DiscoverOrg, an IT company, and had recently been promoted to customer development representative.
Ms. Bement said in a telephone interview that her son first began struggling with drugs while a student at Penn.
“Alex would go through recovery, get sober, and pull himself up by the boot straps, and say he was ‘ready to set the world on fire,’ ” she said. “He did everything with gusto.”
“Alex was extremely genuine and real and always spoke from the heart, especially about the things he believed in. He always called a spade a spade,” Mr. Stose said.
“He was a person who was genuinely concerned about others. He was a person who marched to the beat of his own drum,” he said. “I’ve never met a person who was more embracing.”
Mr. Bement who continued his athleticism, won the 2018 Ironman competition that was held in Cambridge.
“He always did athletics to the nines,” Mr. Stose said, “and competed in the Ironman with very little training. He just went out there and finished it.”
“His mojo was lacrosse and mine is dancing,” said Seanne Rachel Tsai, a Washington Redskins cheerleader who met Mr. Bement on Hinge, a dating app.
The couple just celebrated being together for a year last week.
“From the moment I met Alex, he was full of life and light, and determined to live life to the fullest,” said Ms. Tsai, who is an account manager for ServiceNow in Washington, a software company.
“It was so easy to fall in love with Alex even though I fought that for a while,” she said. “Everything he did, he did with an intensity that I miss so much.”
“He was one of the most passionate people I have ever come across in everything he did,” Mr. Colpitts wrote. “His passion for lacrosse, coaching, music and film was something I admired so much about him.
“He was just as passionate about his friendships and always willing to help and be there to comfort you whenever you needed it,” he wrote. “Even though he would never admit it, he was one of the smartest people I knew. “
A memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. Saturday at Old St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, North Charles and Saratoga streets.
In addition to his parents and girlfriend, Mr. Bement is survived by two brothers, Owen Bement of Oakenshawe and William Bement of Fells Point; and aunts, uncles and cousins.