Every now and then, someone within the NBA family comes along and reminds us all that life is bigger than basketball.
This week, that person was Marc Gasol.
Having teamed up with Spanish NGO Proactiva Open Arms, Gasol helped save the life of a migrant who came perilously close to drowning in the Mediterranean Sea earlier this week.
Frustration, anger, and helplessness. It’s unbelievable how so many vulnerable people are abandoned to their deaths at sea.
Deep admiration for these I call my teammates at this time @openarms_fund pic.twitter.com/TR0KnRsrTE
— Marc Gasol (@MarcGasol) July 17, 2018
According to Gasol, it’s up to him to “set a good example”.
“I want to be a first-hand witness and save people. The risk I may take because I’m an NBA player falls to another, less important level.
“There’s no better example than the volunteers who are here, who I am cohabiting with. They have a great team and you see everything they do is for the common good.”
Gasol went on to explain that his team had intercepted a call between a Libyan patrol ship and a merchant, leading them to discover that three people had been left behind after a boat was destroyed.
“It’s the sensation of having helped save a life – that if it hadn’t been for our team, no one would have found out that this had happened,” he said.
“It would have been said that 150 lives were saved, and the reality is that they had left people who were still alive at sea. I know how those people were [physically].
“If we had arrived earlier, perhaps we could have rescued more people. And if we had arrived 15 or 20 minutes later, Josephine would have likely been dead, too.”
Now this is some truly admirable work.