CHESTER, Pa. (CBS) — A Chester native who’s risen to play in the NBA came back home, only to be surprised by teachers and friends at his old school.

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson plays small forward for the Brooklyn Nets but comes home often — for family, friends, and to give back.

He’s been working on starting a youth basketball league at Chester Community Charter School this fall, but first, his alma mater had a surprise for him.

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School CEO Dr. David Clark announced, “From this point on, this gymnasium will be called the Rondae Hollis-Jefferson Gymnasium.”

Hollis-Jefferson had no idea this was coming. He recalled his eight years at the school — the good and the bad — and choked up a little.

“I feel like I had a great support system who loved me and cared for me and was there for me every step of the way and I really appreciate it from the bottom of my heart,” Hollis-Jefferson said.

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After having a few minutes to take it all in, he shared with feelings with KYW Newsradio.

“To be able to say, like, this honor was because of my visit and my passion for my city, it just says a lot,” he said. “It goes a long way. So I just really appreciate the people that came up with this idea to give me the award and thank me for everything that I’ve done. It’s just a dream come true and a blessing.”

He left a message for students who attended the announcement. No matter what, make sure to show your love, because it’s worked for him.

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