Pacers Organist Neil Copley Passes Away
Pacers Sports & Entertainment lost a beloved family member on Friday, when longtime organist Neil Copley passed away.
A graduate of Southport High School and Butler University, Copley served as the in-arena organist for all Pacers games at Bankers Life Fieldhouse since October 2008. Copley was also the organist for Pacers games at Market Square Arena from 1980-82.
In his current role, Copley was responsible for playing live offense beds and crowd prompts. He entertained countless fans over the years with his distinct playing style that helped create a unique and timeless basketball experience at The Fieldhouse.
"Neil was a tremendous asset to our organization and the fans and he will truly be missed," said Dean Heaviland, Vice President of Game Operations. "His ability to follow the game and play the organ in sync with each possession in unmatched, and he was so good many people didn’t even realize he was playing live each game."
His work with the Pacers was just a small part of Copley’s involvement in the greater Indianapolis community. A talented musician, conductor and teacher, Copley was a fixture in the Indianapolis music scene for the past several decades. He worked as an organist for several other local sports franchises over the years, including the Racers, the Checkers, the Ice, and the Indians. He also served as the principal trombonist for the Indiana Wind Symphony since 1999.
Our sincere condolences go out to Copley’s family and loved ones.