Skip to main content
Publish date:

Anthony Edwards connects with Georgia boy who lost family in fire

Edwards overcame his own loss on his way to the NBA.
Anthony Edwards / Minnesota Timberwolves

Prior to the Minnesota Timberwolves game with the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday night, Anthony Edwards connected with a Georgia boy who lost his family in a fire.

12-year-old Taden Johnson was a victim of a fire in the Hallmark Mobile Home Park in Athens, Ga. on Jan. 27. The fire, which occurred before sunrise, killed Johnson's mother, his sister and his grandmother, but Johnson was able to escape.

Upon hearing the news, Johnson's mentor Zac Hendrix teamed up with Georgia men's basketball player Tye Fagan to set Johnson up with a FaceTime call with Edwards after Minnesota's morning walkthrough in Cleveland.

"He just said, ‘Hey, Taeden, look man, I lost my mother, I also lost my grandmother at a young age and look where I’m at now," Hendrix told the Athens Banner-Herald. "Never give up. Always give 110 percent to where you eventually want to go. Just follow your dreams and nothing will stop you from doing that.’”

Edwards starred for one season with the Bulldogs before becoming the No. 1 overall pick in last year's NBA Draft but lost his mother and grandmother to cancer within eight months when he was in eighth grade. 

The similar experience helped the two bond quickly as Edwards offered Johnson his number and Johnson planned on switching his number in basketball to 5, the same number Edwards wore at Georgia.

To add to the support, Hendrix set up a GoFundMe account to help Taden and his half-sister, Sha'Niah with future expenses. As of Tuesday evening, the account had raised over $206,000.

Next Up

ted mann concert hall - university of minnesota

2 armed suspects rob victim at U of M concert hall

The two suspects pointed guns at the victim.

West St Paul, Minnesota - June 2019

Nine police agencies called in for crowd control after 2 shot in West St. Paul

Police say a large group "attempted to take control" of part of the crime scene.

Brooklyn Center police, Daunte Wright

Brooklyn Center approves $1.3M public safety budget, including policing reforms

The city will use some money from the police department for the new programs.

snow, slush

Snow impacting morning commute across southern Minnesota

A quick inch could make a bit of a mess on the roads.

40636734693_0ec9b711a6_k

Minnesota United star allegedly hit teen with gun in Argentina

The 26-year-old could face charges in Argentina.

Chris Finch

Hawks bury Timberwolves in 3-point barrage

Without D'Angelo Russell, the Wolves couldn't keep up with the Hawks.

P.J. Fleck, Gophers football

Kirk Ciarocca returning to Gophers as offensive coordinator

The architect of the 2019 offense will look to revive the Gophers.

Klobuchar - MTP - NBC screengrab

Klobuchar says Congress should pass law to protect abortion rights

Her comments came as the Supreme Court appears poised to weaken — or gut — Roe v. Wade

MPD missing Heard - crop 1_

Minneapolis woman missing a week is found safe

The 36-year-old hasn't been seen or heard from recently.

unsplash cold winter breath dark

Hello, winter: List of the coldest wind chills in MN Monday morning

The state went from a relatively mild start of the season, to downright frigid wind chills.

deer

1 CWD-positive deer in Brainerd Lakes area, so surveillance will continue

The CWD monitoring measures were supposed to end after this year.

unsplash - visitor patient doctor hospital emergency - crop

MN program will train, hire 1,000 nursing assistants for long-term care

The facilities are facing a severe staffing shortage.

Related

Anthony Edwards / Minnesota Timberwolves

NBA analyst Nate Duncan slammed for Anthony Edwards criticism

Edwards had a highlight dunk, but Duncan was quick to point out his rough night overall.

Anthony Edwards / Minnesota Timberwolves

Anthony Edwards shines, but Lakers defeat Timberwolves

Anthony Edwards scored a career-high 28 points, but it wasn't enough to defeat the defending champs.

Anthony Edwards / Minnesota Timberwolves

Malik Beasley, Anthony Edwards help Wolves end losing streak

Beasley and Edwards both scored 23 in a rare Timberwolves victory.

Anthony Edwards / Minnesota Timberwolves

Anthony Edwards enhances ROY campaign, Zion takes over to snap winning streak

The Wolves blew a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter in a loss to New Orleans.

Anthony Edwards

Watch: Anthony Edwards unleashes poster-worthy dunk in win over Blazers

Edwards capped off a career-high 34 points with an exclamation point.