There was shock on social media when Dikembe Mutombo, a beloved NBA Hall-of-Famer, was revealed to be in a fight for life.
Fans were able to weigh in on the NBA’s statement about Mutombo being under treatment for a brain cancer.
“Just wanted to take a minute and wish the best to Dikembe Mutombo who’s been diagnosed with a brain tumour. Kick its ass Dikembe,”One fan wrote.
“Thoughts with Dikembe Mutombo and his family as he’s undergoing treatment for a brain tumor….remember the time in 2018 when he flew an 8-year-old boy from the Democratic Republic of Congo to L.A. to pay for his tumor removal,”One thing led to another.
In the statement, league officials shared that Mutombo is “receiving the best care possible from a collaborative team of specialists in Atlanta and is in great spirits as he begins treatment. “Dikembe and his family ask for privacy during this time so they can focus on his care. They are grateful for your prayers and good wishes.”
The tall, 56-year-old was known for his fierce defense. His NBA playing career spanned over 18 seasons. He played for the Atlanta Hawks as well as the New York Knicks, New Jersey Nets, and Houston Rockets. In 2008, he retired.
But that’s when his other work continued. ESPN reports that Mutombo, who can speak nine languages, established the Dikembe Mutombo Foundation, which aims to improve the quality of life in Congo. His foundation constructed a hospital in Kinshasa that has served more than half a millennium of people regardless of their ability to pay.