Shaquille O’Neal has been the true example of grit and strength and resistance throughout his entire professional career.
But right now, he’s dealing with the pain of a broken heart.
The basketball legend is currently mourning the loss of his sister Ayesha Harrison-Jex, who passed away Thursday (Oct. 24) after a three year long battle with cancer.
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She was just 40 years old.
“We have to tell you why you’re not seeing Shaquille O’Neal here on the set tonight,” explained Inside the NBA co-host host Ernie Johnson said Thursday (Oct. 24) on the TNT show, according to People magazine. “Basically the ‘Big Fella,’ who I’ve described as ‘the biggest kid in the world,’ his heart is breaking tonight. He said his world revolves around his brother and two sisters. And he lost one of his sisters this morning.”
“Thanks for the condolences and the love,” O’Neal later tweeted out to his fellow Inside the NBA co-hosts, including Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith. If I had older brothers, it would be you 3. Love y’all and love you more Candice.
Thanks for the condolences and the love. If I had older brothers, it would be you 3. Love y’all and love you more Candice.
— SHAQ (@SHAQ) October 25, 2019
According to People magazine, Harrison-Jex willbe laid to rest in a military cemetery alongside O’Neal’s stepfather, Sgt. Phillip Harrison.
“I’m trying to put into words the way Shaquille has reacted to this, and he’s struggling,” Johnson said. “And when he struggles, we struggle with him. Because he’s one of our brothers and we feel for him tonight.”