An NBA star says his mother has contracted COVID-19 and is fighting for her life at the hospital.
Minnesota Timberwolves' center Karl-Anthony Towns delivered an emotional announcement Wednesday morning. In the message shared on his social media channels, Towns explained that early last week, his parents weren't feeling well and that he urged them to go to the hospital.
His father, Karl Sr., was eventually released from the hospital. But his mother, Jacqueline, has remained hospitalized and her health has deteriorated.
"Things went sideways quick, and her lungs were extremely getting worse," Towns said in the video. "She had to be put on a ventilator."
View this post on Instagram
Sharing my story in the hopes that everyone stays at home! We need more equipment and we need to help those medical personnel on the front lines. Thank you to the medical staff who are helping my mom. You are all the true heroes! Praying for all of us at this difficult time.
Towns later revealed in the video that his mother is currently in a medically-induced coma.
He went on to urge fans to take the virus and the pandemic seriously.
"This disease needs to not be taken lightly," Towns said. "Please protect your families, your loved ones, friends, yourself... practice social distancing. Please don't go be in places where there are a lot of people."
A little more than a week before he announced his mother's deteriorating health conditions, Towns had pledged to donate $100,000 to the Mayo Clinic.
View this post on Instagram
@MayoClinic has begun rolling out a test to detect the virus that causes COVID-19. My hope is that we can fight this virus quicker and more efficiently by increasing the testing capabilities and availability and Mayo Clinic’s overall COVID-19 response. This is why I will be donating $100K to support these efforts. Thank you to the Mayo Clinic workers and all healthcare workers who are working around the clock to treat us. You are our heroes. We’re all in this together, let’s protect ourselves and the community around us.
"My hope is that we can fight this virus quicker and more efficiently by increasing the testing capabilities and availability and Mayo Clinic's overall COVID-19 response," Towns said in a Mar. 15 Instagram post.
The NBA suspended its season earlier this month after Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz tested positive for COVID-19 moments before his team was scheduled to take on the Oklahoma City Thunder. Since the season suspension, several other NBA players, such as Gobert's teammate Donovan Mitchell, the Brooklyn Nets' Kevin Durant and the Boston Celtics' Marcus Smart, have also tested positive for the virus.
This story was originally published by KJ Hiramoto on WFTS in Tampa, Florida.