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Timberwolves player Karl Anthony Towns with his family before being named rookie of the year.

Source: Star Tribune via Getty Images / Getty

NBA star Karl-Anthony Towns shared how he journeyed through a tumultuous year which saw him lose one of his biggest fan and supporters, his mother Jacqueline Cruz-Towns, after she died from COVID-19 complications in April at age 59.

In a YouTube video titled, “The Toughest Year of My Life,” the 24-year-old Minnesota Timberwolves center sat down with Natalie Manuel Lee, where he shared his most difficult moments leading up to and after her death.

One of the most heartbreaking reveals he made was that he made the decision to pull the plug on his mother after she spent weeks in a coma. Her death was one of the first major celebrity deaths as the coronavirus waged on in the coming months. Now over 230,000 Americans have died from the virus.

Prior to dropping the video, Towns shared that he intended on breaking his silence about his challenges in a series of Instagram Story posts on Monday.

Towns recalls that he struggled with telling his grandmother that his mother had passed. He said that while his aunts helped calm her nerves he couldn’t conceptualize losing a child.

“The worst call, the most difficult one, it was calling her mom,” he said through tears. “It was calling my grandmother. Telling her, mostly, you lost your daughter. I done everything as a grandson I could do to protect her, I got to let her go. There’s nothing worse than losing your kid.”

In the moments leading up to her death, Towns said she was surrounded by love as he held up an iPad so that family members could pay their final respects.

“At that moment, I pulled the plug, and I just let her pass,” he continued. “They told me, ‘She may be alive for another hour, maybe two, but she’s been fighting for a long time.’ They pulled the plug, and in 25 [minutes] she was gone.”

One silver lining is that Towns has seemed to find love in model Jordyn Woods. The two made it Instagram official on Woods’ birthday in September after months of speculation around their relationship.

“There are darknesses in life and there are lights, and you are one of the lights, the light of all lights,” he wrote as a caption underneath photos of the two celebrating Woods’ birthday.

Towns said he’s focused on being a support system for his father and sister, and feels that by talking about his tragic loss, he’s experiencing his own therapeutic process.

“I thought this would be therapeutic for me to admit that these things are real and how I feel is real and being able to try to find some normalcy,” he said.


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