Everyone knows someone who has been affected by cancer, but at the age of 25, Timberwolves guard Ricky Rubio has already experienced a lifetime of tragedy from the disease.
And now Rubio is doing something about it – according to an article done by the NBA Players Association, Rubio is starting a foundation with the aim of bringing happiness to some of the youngest people fighting the disease.
Cancer hits close to home
Over the last year alone Rubio has lost both his mother and his former basketball coach – Flip Saunders – to cancer.
Gràcies per agafar-me sempre de la mà i aixecar-me quan més ho necessitava. Estic molt fotut però tinc la teva fortalesa, i com tu vas fer, no deixaré de lluitar mai i sempre amb un somriure d'orella a orella. Amb tu s'envà part de mi, però part de tu es queda aqui amb mi, dins del meu cor. No sóc molt de paraules, però t'ho mereixes això i molt més. Et trobaré molt a faltar, però sé que des d'allà a dalt ens cuidaràs a tots com sempre ho has fet. Ets l'amor de la meva vida. T'estimo molt mama. ????
A photo posted by Ricky Rubio (@ruuufio) on May 27, 2016 at 5:21am PDT
But it certainly wasn't the first time Rubio has lost someone close to the disease though.
When he was a child, Rubio's grandmother passed away from liver cancer, then his grandfather died of lung cancer. A few childhood friends of his also lost parents in their late 40s and early 50s to cancer.
"Cancer is one of the most dangerous and painful things that exists," Rubio said in an interview with the National Basketball Players Association. "It's something that sometimes you can't find the cure. And the pain that you're going through and seeing the person that you love going through that much pain, it's super hard to get through it. It's super painful."
Rubio is working with his childhood friend and business manager, Lucas Charte, to start the foundation later this year. It will be focused on cancer and children with special needs and disabilities.
Rubio knows that sometimes the smallest things can make a big difference for people in those situations.
So the motto of Rubio's foundation is: "Whatever it takes, whatever a kid asks, I will try to make it happen."
If you want to read the whole piece by Jared Zwerling for the NBPA click here.