by Aja Chestine
Due to an inordinate number of errors, we are reprinting the story on NBA star Dwayne Wade from last week’s MCJ.
Doing what many star athletes do who care about their community and its children, former Marquette Golden Eagle and current Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade was in Milwaukee recently to help honor Boys & Girls club “Youth of the Year” scholarship recipients now attending Marquette University.
This was the second year in a row that Wade—accompanied by his sister Tragil—talked to youth at the Pieper Hillside Boys & Girls Club. Wade gives back to the community through his foundation, “Wade’s World.” Each student who attended Wade’s speech received a book bag full of school supplies.
Standing before the excited youths at the Pieper Hillside Boys & Girls Club after being introduced by the club’s director Robert Jackson, who played with Wade at Marquette, the NBA star talked to the youth about giving back and staying true to his roots.
Wade stressed the importance of giving, that by doing so you can give an individual an opportunity to change their life.
“Even though Chicago is my hometown and Miami is my new home, Milwaukee falls right in the middle,” he said. “Milwaukee will always hold a very special place with me.”
Wade emphasized the value of education by using his own personal academic failures and achievements. Wade revealed that during his freshman year at Marquette, he was ineligible to play due to his poor grades.
“Merely improving my academics changed the outcome of the rest of my life,” Wade said. “If I didn’t improve my grades, I would have never made it to the NBA”.
During the question and answer session after Wade’s speech, a questioner asked if he ever imagined, while growing up in Robbins, Ill., he’d play in two NBA Finals and being the Finals MVP during the 2006 season when the Heat became World Champions?
“No,” Wade replied. “As a kid I dreamed of playing in the NBA, but not about all the opportunities it would allow me to have; including playing in the Olympics, acting in movies and commercials and traveling the world. When I became an adult, I realized that I didn’t dream big enough.”
Asked what does he do with his time off?, Wade flashed a bright smile and said “spending time with my two sons, Zion & Zaire. While winning games are great, I feel being a father is priceless.”
Wade told the students their future starts today and to prepare for it now. “If you don’t know something, ask someone you think has the answers like a parent, teacher, mentor or coach. Never be afraid to ask for help. If you ask for help, that means you care about your life”.