Fan of Basketball and School
Unlike many 11-year-olds, Bernard Curtis Brown II bounded out of his house every school day. "He lived to go to school,'' said his mother, Sinita. ''If he was sick, he would always say he was feeling better so he could get to school."
But before Bernard left, a few things had to be in order. His parents did not demand it, but Bernard's bed had to be made, his room straightened, and his clothes ironed before he stepped out into the world. ''Oh yes, he was a neat child,'' his mother said with a laugh.
He also awoke with a unusual energy. "He would just pop right up," his mother said. So she did not mind letting him stay up late to watch basketball on television.
An ambitious player, Bernard had just bought a pair of Air Jordan basketball shoes and was wearing them on Sept. 11 on a flight to California as part of a trip sponsored by the National Geographic Society. A Washington resident, he was enlivened by the prospect of Michael Jordan running the court for his hometown Wizards.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on October 12, 2001.