Knicks five-time NBA All-Star small forward Carmelo Anthony invited Trayvon Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, and older brother, Jahvaris Fulton, 21, to Madison Square Garden to pose for pictures before New York defeated the lowly Washington Wizards 103-65 on Friday night.
Anthony, a three-time All-NBA Third-Team selection who was taken out of Syracuse University with the third overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft by the Denver Nuggets, wanted Martin’s kin, including his three-year-old brother, to stay and watch the game.
However, the family chose to leave prior to tipoff to avoid media attention.
“[It was] a blessing, an honor,” said Anthony, 27, who was born in Brooklyn and raised in the crime-riddled streets of Baltimore, Maryland. “We all know the tragedy that happened, and just to get in a different space of mind right now, just bringing them to not even the game, but to the locker room in the back, meeting all the players, meeting the coaches, that was the easy part. We had no media there. It was just something that I wanted to do.”
The 2003 NCAA Basketball Tournament Most Outstanding Player said he can empathize with the Fulton’s because his sister, Michelle, died from a pre-existing medical condition in December 2010.
“I lost my sister last year,” Anthony said, “I know what it feels like, even with his little brother. He didn’t even want to come to the game, didn’t even know what was going on. He wanted to go see ‘The Lion King,’ but just for them to be there, that meant a lot.”
The 17-year-old Martin was fatally shot by a 28-year-old hall monitor named George Zimmerman on February 26 for wearing a hooded sweatshirt in Sanford, Florida.
The muscle for “Celery City” was charged this weekend with second-degree murder and his arrangement has been scheduled for May 29.
In actuality, nobody will ever know for certain what happened between Martin and Zimmerman on that tragic winter evening.
Still, it’s “a blessing, an honor” to cheer for a man like Carmelo Anthony.