Basketball mourns for Celtics legend Jo Jo White
LOS ANGELES, USA – Boston Celtics great Jo Jo White, a two-time NBA champion and Olympic gold medalist, died Tuesday, January 16, aged 71, his family said.
"We are deeply saddened by the loss of an incredible husband and father," the White family said in a statement. "He was a Hall Of Fame basketball player but an even better man."
White's daughter Meka White was quoted by The Undefeated website as saying the former basketball star had died following an illness brought on by dementia.
"My dad died from complications (pneumonia) from dementia that was brought on by the removal of a benign brain tumor in May 2010," White said.
White, who won an Olympic gold medal with the US team in the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, won two NBA crowns with the Celtics in 1974 and 1976.
He spent a decade with the Celtics between 1969 and 1979 before short spells with the Golden State Warriors and Kansas City Kings at the end of his career.
The Celtics paid tribute to White in a statement on the team's website.
"We are terribly saddened by the passing of the great Jo Jo White," the Celtics statement said.
"He was a champion and a gentleman; supremely talented and brilliant on the court, and endlessly gracious off of it."
"His contributions to the team’s championship legacy may have only been surpassed by the deep and lasting impact that he had in the community."
"The thoughts and sympathies of the entire Celtics organization are with the White family."