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For Jamison, a Cause That Truly Hit Home

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By Michael Lee
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, February 25, 2008

Tonight the Washington Wizards will play their first game in New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina landed on the Gulf Coast in August 2005, but forward Antawn Jamison is back for the second time this month. Jamison scored two points in the All-Star Game and helped build a playground at Mahalia Jackson Early Childhood and Family Learning Center. He said the city's recovery from the storm is important to him, and not just because he spent the first 13 years of his life four hours away in Shreveport, La.

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Jamison's parents, Albert and Kathy, were on vacation visiting family and friends in New Orleans when Katrina hit. They didn't return home to Charlotte for 10 days. "They just came down here to relax and have a good time and they found out something was going on," Jamison said. "They couldn't get out. They couldn't get a car. It was tough for them for a little bit."

Jamison said he called his parents every day, while they were stranded in their hotel. They eventually got a ride to Houston and flew home. "It was tough not knowing when or how or even if they were going to get out," he said.

The Jamisons returned to New Orleans during all-star weekend for the first time since the storm. "They was so excited to get back and see how things have changed," Jamison said. "It was an unfortunate event, but everybody is doing their part with rebuilding. I'm happy my family was healthy and safe."

In conjunction with the NBA, Jamison will provide tickets for 20 New Orleans area children to attend the game tonight and hold a meet-and-greet with them before the game.

UP NEXT: Monday at Hornets 8 p.m. Comcast SportsNet, WTEM-980

Tuesday at Rockets 8:30 p.m. Comcast SportsNet+, WTEM-980


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