There is no shortage of stories from Michael Jordan's time in the NBA. We've heard countless tales of what happened behind the scenes through Jordan's extraordinary career.
In a biography of the star, titled From Michael Jordan; The Life, 2014 book by Roland Lazenby, we get another one of these interesting tales. This time, it involves a victim of child abuse whose face was disfigured by a fire deliberately caused by his own father.
Jordan fought to keep his self-indulgence private as well as the burdens he chose to bear beyond the game. “I thought in the early days, he was doing so much, it was unbelievable,” Bach recalled. “He always visited with some person or child who had a last wish. He never turned anyone down. Every night he faced that, and I could never understand how he was strong enough to do it. Kids that were burned, brutalized, and dying by disease or something else. I can still remember he saw a kid who was brought in whose father had burned his face off him**. They brought him in, and Michael talked to him in that old dressing room we had in Chicago Stadium before the game.
He just talked to him. You couldn’t imagine, a kid that was hideously burned. And Michael just talked to him. He put him on the bench, and during the game he would come over and ask, ‘How’d you like that jump shot?’ One of the officials came over and said, ‘Michael, you can’t have that kid on the bench. It’s against league rules.’ And Michael looked at him and said, ‘He’s on the bench.’ He left our team time-outs to talk to the kid. I can remember John Paxson and I having tears in our eyes, looking at that scene, because the kid was so hideously burned. And here’s Michael talking to him. So he had that greatness in him. It brought out scenes like that. That was repeated many times. He was a wonder man.
MJ defied NBA rules and brought a young boy to sit with the players and talk to him throughout the game -- a truly remarkable task for the international superstar.
While the story itself is sad, Jordan's display of kindness is truly inspiring. Hopefully, today's stars will use it as motivation to take action of their own.