Karl-Anthony Towns has seen seven family members die from COVID-19, including his mother

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On Wednesday, Karl-Anthony Towns‘ uncle died from complications of COVID-19.

Towns said that was the seventh family member he watched die to the virus, which has ravaged the nation and hit Black communities particularly hard. The deaths included his mother back before the NBA’s restart, which has been hard for Towns to process. Here’s what Towns said Friday, via Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic.

“I’m the one looking for answers to try to keep my family well informed and make all the moves necessary to keep them alive.”

As for returning to play:

“It always brought a smile for me when I saw my mom at the baseline and in the stands and stuff and having a good time watching me play. It’s going to be hard to play. It’s going to be difficult to say this is therapy, I don’t think it will ever be therapy again for me. But it gives me a chance to relive good memories I had I guess that’s the only therapy I’m going to get from it. It’s not going to help me emotionally or anything like that.”

The NBA opens training camps and is working toward a return to play just as coronavirus cases are spiking across the nation, overwhelming hospitals in some regions. Towns is not the only player to lose someone close to him due to COVID-19, but he has been hit unfortunately hard.

Our thoughts are with him and his family as he returns to play.