The memories are fleeting. The father only can see his infant son in his mind. Then it goes blank.
So family members describe to Gerald Galloway how his son looks now - his smile, his handsome appearance, his 6-foot-1 height.
They also tell Gerald how his son looks on the basketball court, darting up and down, making 3-pointers, dunking over players nearly a foot taller. They have to tell him. Gerald never has seen his son play basketball.
He never will.
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Ramon Galloway was 2 when his father was shot on the streets of Philadelphia. It took him time to understand that - as a result - his father was blind, and what that meant.
The assistance he provided his father - and others - growing up helped mold Ramon into the generous person he is today.
Ramon, a freshman guard on the South Carolina men's basketball team, left Philadelphia - and his father - to attend high school in Florida. But the two remain close.
"He's grown. He's tall," Gerald Galloway said from his home in Philadelphia, where he lives on disability. "I'm just happy for him. He has come a long way."
A KID FROM PHILLY
Ramon is the fourth-oldest of his father's nine children. His mother, Karen Davis, and Gerald split up shortly after Ramon's birth, and Ramon lived with his mother and a brother and sister until he was 13. He seldom saw his father before the shooting.
But Gerald "did a good job" of keeping us together," Ramon said. It's a "nice, big, good family."
Gerald, who was 25 when he was shot, will not go into details of the incident, only to say "the streets of Philadelphia, it's a typical big city."
In any case, Gerald was worried how his son would react.
"I'm independent. So when I first initially got hurt, I didn't act like I was blind," Gerald said. "He thought, as a two-year-old, that I could see. But as he got older, he realized that I couldn't see. It took some time. Then I explained to him what happened."
Gradually, Ramon began to understand. Even though he lived in a different section of Philadelphia, he would hop on a bus and visit his father whenever he could.
When he was 13, Ramon decided to move in with his father.
"Just because of his situation," Ramon said. "Even though I couldn't help him out as much because I was young, I just wanted to be near my dad."
Gerald had a large support system, and having grown up in Philadelphia, he knew the town well enough to get around on his own for the most part. But Ramon did his best to help, running errands and such.
That's the type of person Ramon is, according to his father. Even as a toddler, he would share toys with siblings. As he grew older, he helped the elderly and homeless.
When Ramon was about 5, he and his mother were downtown, and Ramon wandered off. They had passed a homeless man, and when Ramon's mom turned for a split-second, Ramon backtracked to the man, asking why he was sleeping on the ground, why he didn't go home.
Ramon shows the same generosity now, digging into his pockets to help the homeless he encounters on the street.
"If he's homeless or not, it's about the kindness of your heart. That's all it boils down to," Ramon said. "If I've got something and somebody needed it - they ask for it and they need it - I help them out."
By his sophomore year of high school, it was evident Ramon had a future in basketball. But his family felt he was being held back in Philadelphia, where they thought he was getting lost in the shuffle of competition and was becoming a victim of what they perceived as hoops politics.
An opportunity arose in Florida, and Ramon moved in with a cousin in Palm Beach Gardens. At William T. Dwyer High School, Ramon averaged 17 points per game in each of his two seasons, made all-area and led the team to a regional final.
He eventually made his way into national recruiting rankings, and just before his senior year, he committed to the Gamecocks.
Upon arriving on campus, he made a quick impression.
On the court, it was his athleticism. Ramon can execute a one-handed windmill dunk after putting the ball through one leg.
"Aw, man, (an) athlete," junior forward Austin Steed said, when asked to describe his teammate. "Athlete, athlete. That's all he is. Pure athlete."
Off the court, it was his personality.He is quite the talker.
"He gets everyone riled up. We need that," freshman forward Lakeem Jackson said.
Jackson was the higher-profile recruit, but Ramon has played nearly as much coming off the bench. He made four 3-pointers against Miami and has been a key reserve at both guard positions.
And after nearly every game, he gets a call from his dad.
"He played basketball himself when he was younger, so he knows a lot of the game," Ramon said. "So he like tells me what I could work on, and I tell him what I didn't do. He just tells me, 'Keep being a team player and keep working hard.'"
Gerald hopes to attend USC's game against Florida on Feb. 10, which is Ramon's 19th birthday.
"I always try to be there on his birthday," Gerald said.
The last time Gerald was in South Carolina, visiting family in Summerville, he could see, and Ramon's mother was pregnant with Ramon.
The next time he visits South Carolina, Gerald Galloway still plans to see his son play basketball - in his own way. A friend or family member will sit next to him and describe the action, as was the ritual when Ramon played as a youngster.
Galloway has big dreams. Maybe an All-SEC season. Maybe the pros. Whatever happens, he vows to keep helping others - and Gerald.
"He's my dad. He brought me into this world," Ramon said. "So if I could do anything, I could help him out with anything he needed."