I don't have all that many really happy memories of time spent with my Dad, but many of them involved watching Jazz games together. When I was 13, that was right about when the Jazz started to really get good. My Junior High had invited a few Jazz players and Coach Sloan to come for an assembly. My dad did the PA work for the assembly. The school knew him and knew that he was a studio engineer, so they'd ask him to do stuff like this all the time.
It was Malone, Bailey, and Sloan that came. During the presentation, Sloan stood in the back and said very little. He let the players do most of the talking. Bailey was the one that talked the most. I don't have any recollection of what they said. But after their presentation was done, the principle allowed students to come up and meet the visitors. This time Malone stood back, and let the others come forward. He was kind of a jerk, tbh. On the other hand, Bailey was awesome. I met him a few times and he was always really cool. Then there was the coach. Sloan was the nicest man. So different from what I remembered seeing on TV. He was kind and patient with all the kids. He was willing to answer questions and stay until everyone had a chance to talk.
After everyone had gone back to class, I stayed to help my dad clean up. As we were doing so, Sloan came up and just struck up a conversation with my dad. It was like they were old friends from back in the day. There was no basketball talk, just men talking about stuff. It was kind of surreal. I will never forget how kind and friendly Sloan was. He was the truest form of salt-of-the-earth.