If there was ever a man who embodied the words “Gentle Giant” it would be Manute Bol. The Sudanese born son of a Dinka tribal chief turned NBA basketball player saw his towering 7 feet 7 inches frame as a gift from God & he used that gift to help the people of his homeland. Mostly known for playng for the Washington Bullets as part of the team that boasted both the shortest & tallest men in the NBA at the time, Manute also played for Golden State Warriors, Philadelphia 76ers and Miami Heat in the 10 year span of his NBA career from 1985-1995 along with a very short lived hockey career.
Manute Bol received many accolades for his shot blocking, but he will mostly be remebered for his incredibly big heart & humanatarian efforts toward helping his war ravaged homeland of Sudan & its refugees. Manute Bol spent most of his NBA riches to help his homeland & should be remebered as the ultimate African hero who was the epitome of Sankofa & the Ghanaian proverb which states “it takes a village to raise a child”. Manute Bol never forgot his village & returned over & over again to make sure that he did his part in raising it from the destruction of war. Manute lived up to his name, which means “Special Blessing”. The people of Sudan were blessed to have him as a native son & flag bearer & all those who had the opportunity to watch him play basketball or to be in his presence could surely see just how special Sudan’s gentle giant was. On June 19, 2010, Bol died from acute kidney failure and complications from Stevens–Johnson syndrome at the University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville, Virginia. We praise, honor & celebrate our brother Manute Bol as he receives his well earned & deserved angel’s wings.
“...the NBA officially followed Bol to Africa when Stern joined Dikembe Mutombo, from the Congo, Alonzo Mourning and Patrick Ewing, and several other players, officials and coaches, in South Africa to conduct youth clinics and meet the newly freed Nelson Mandela. Nineteen years after Bol started regularly bringing the NBA’s credentials to Africa, the NBA late last month opened the office to which Fall was given the keys as a vice president. ”The thing that stuck out to me about Manute was he was the real deal who gave back,” said Fall, who as a player for the University of the District of Columbia as the ’80s turned into the ’90s was often mistaken for one of Bol’s brothers. “I know its cliché to say he just didn’t talk the talk, but he didn’t.“READ MORE