Damian Lillard is one of many people who have paid tributes to Caleb Swanigan after the sad news of the basketball star’s death.
Swanigan, who played for Portland Trail Blazers and Sacramento Kings, has passed away at the age of 25.
His death was confirmed to news outlet WANE 15 by the Allen County Coroners Office who said that Swanigan died of natural causes.
“Our thoughts and prayers to Caleb Swanigan’s family and friends,” Purdue Mens Basketball wrote in a tribute. “The world lost a gentle soul last night. Love you Biggie.”
A previous post from Swanigan’s former teammate, Damian Lillard, came to the spotlight amid the devastating news.
Damian Lillard pays tribute to Caleb Swanigan
Damian Lillard, who currently plays for Portland Trail Blazers, has paid a touching tribute to Caleb Swanigan on social media.
“Rest In Peace Big,” Damian captioned an Instagram post on Tuesday (June 21st) alongside a picture of his former teammate.
Swanigan first attended Michigan State University before transferring to Purdue University.
He achieved a lot in his career after being named Big Ten Player of the Year and first-team All-Big Ten. He was also a finalist for the 2017 Karl Malone Award and graduated with a degree in educational history.
Damian Lillard’s supportive message resurfaces
Damian’s supportive post about Swanigan has resurfaced on the internet after the latter became the target of online trolls last year.
As reported by People at the time, a Twitter account shared a since-removed image of Swanigan and wrote: “How the hell does one go from this to that in a year?????”
Swanigan went through a weight loss journey and Damian came to Swanigan’s defence, slamming the post from the account.
Damian wrote at the time: “If you gone post this s**t with real concern that’s cool. But don’t ask ‘how does one go from this to that’ … he clearly having real life issues.
“That’s how… you don’t know WHAT it is he’s going through to cause a drastic change. If you gone be supportive then do that, but don’t ask no shit like that like it’s not possible when you naturally a big dude and go down a dark road.”
Tributes paid to Swanigan
A number of Swanigan’s friends and basketball teams have paid emotional tributes to the star on social media.
His ex-teammate Ryan Cline paid his respects to Swanigan on Twitter and wrote: “Work ethic & competitiveness were unmatched. No one was in the same ballpark as this dude. So much fun to be around. My boy forever. Fly high Big, you’ll be missed by so many brother.”
“We are heartbroken by the passing of former Trail Blazers player Caleb Swanigan. Our thoughts and prayers are with Caleb’s family, friends and all who loved him. Rest In Peace, Biggie,” wrote Portland Trail Blazers.
NBA shared another tribute which read: “The NBA family is profoundly saddened by the passing of Caleb Swanigan, who played three seasons in the NBA after a decorated career at Purdue. We send our heartfelt condolences to Caleb’s family, friends, and former teammates.”
RIP, Caleb Swanigan. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends during this difficult time.
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