SPORTS MEDICINE : SPORTS: ATHLETES: RETIRED : MEDICAL: CONDITIONS : MEDICAL: PHARMACY PHARMACEUTICAL PHARMACOLOGY DRUG: ADVERSE EVENT: Tragedy And Triumph: The Turbulent Life of Lamar Odom

David P. Dillard
 

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SPORTS MEDICINE :

SPORTS: ATHLETES: RETIRED :

MEDICAL: CONDITIONS :

MEDICAL: PHARMACY PHARMACEUTICAL PHARMACOLOGY DRUG: ADVERSE EVENT:

Tragedy And Triumph: The Turbulent Life of Lamar Odom

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Tragedy And Triumph: The Turbulent Life of Lamar Odom

By Steve Almasy, Brandon Griggs and Lisa Respers France

CNN

Updated 9:41 AM ET, Sat October 17, 2015

http://www.cnn.com/2015/10/16/entertainment/ lamar-odom-profile-feat/index.html

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A shorter URL for the above link:

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http://tinyurl.com/p7cz4rc

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(CNN) Basketball may have been easy for Lamar Odom, but life sure hasn't been.

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He was 12, growing up in a rough neighborhood in the New York City borough of Queens, when his mother, Cathy, died of colon cancer. His dad wasn't around much, and his grandmother Mildred Mercer, who raised him as a teenager, died in 2003 when he was in his mid-20s.

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Three years after that, his 6-month-old son, Jayden, died in his crib of sudden infant death syndrome. A grief-stricken Odom cradled Jayden's tiny body in the hospital for hours, refusing to let go.

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In the later years of his NBA career, before he took the court, Odom wrote a tribute to each of his departed loved ones on his sneakers. Three names. Every game. The arena lights shone and the fans cheered and Odom's star-studded Los Angeles Lakers won two NBA titles and Hollywood beckoned, but heartache was never far away.

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"I sometimes have to stop and remind myself how much this guy has been through and how much he's lost," then-teammate Derek Fisher told Sports Illustrated in 2009. "I'm sure there is anger and disappointment inside of him, but to have his spirit, to have his approach to everyday life, I don't know how he does it."

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Now, as Odom, 35, lies clinging to life in a Las Vegas hospital after being found unconscious in a brothel in the Nevada desert, the world is taking a closer look at the talented athlete with the ready smile, the humble nature, the reality-show lifestyle and the famous in-laws.

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Some of us think we know him through his 14 years in the NBA, where he charmed fans and teammates with his athletic grace and unselfish play. Some of us think we know him from his marriage to Khloe Kardashian, which ushered cameras into every corner of his personal life and brought him a new, intensified level of celebrity for which he may not have been prepared.

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But few of us know the whole story.

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"Death always seems to be around me," Odom told the Los Angeles Times in 2011 after a young cousin was killed in New York. "I've been burying people for a long time."

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The complete article may be read at the URL above.

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