Former NBA star Manute Bol dies at 47

If one could sum up the persona of the former NBA star Manute Bol, it would be his quote from the 2004 issue of Sports Illustrated.

“God guided me to America and gave me a good job,” Bol was quoted to say. “But he also gave me a heart so i would look back.”

Bol had reportedly died on Saturday at the University of Virginia Medical Center. Although the cause of death is still being determined, it was known that Bol was being treated for severe kidney trouble and a painful skin condition.

Famous for more than his spectacular blocking moves, Bol is also known for his humanitarian efforts in his homeland. He used his career to give aid to his relief efforts in Sudan, where he spent millions of dollars in investments.

Bol was a very thin 7-feet and six inches giant when he was first drafted at the NBA in 1985. He had played for four teams (Washington Bullets, Golden State Warriors, Philadelphia 76ers, and in Miami) in 10 seasons.

During his first season, he set a record of 397 blocks.