A dual citizen of both Montenegro and Belgium, Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic was impacted a great deal by the terrorist attacks in Brussels on Tuesday.
While his family members and friends are safe, the deadly terrorist attacks took a toll on the young man:
“It’s sad that things like that happen at all anywhere in the world. It’s just sad that people died like that and that such attacks can happen. It was in Brussels, a city I lived [near] for a long time, a city that I love,” Vucevic said Wednesday, via the Orlando Sentinel. “I spent a lot of time there in my childhood. So it wasn’t easy to see those pictures and to know that stuff had actually happened.”
Before the attacks, the 25-year-old big man planned on visiting friends, some of whom he grew up with during the formative years of his youth.
See, Vucevic lived in a Brussels suburb called Sterrebeek, a 20-minue ride to Brussels, from just before his second birthday until he was 11.
Despite the harrowing experience of the place he once called home, Vucevic still plans on visiting friends in Brussels following the end of the Magic’s season.
Unfortunately for the Magic family, Vucevic isn’t the first player on the team to be impacted by terrorism over the past year.
Back in November, teammate Evan Fournier dealt with the helpless feeling of not knowing whether his friends and family were safe following the deadly attacks in Paris.
Born in Saint-Maurice, a suburb of Paris, Fournier spent his childhood in France before being selected in the first round of the 2012 NBA draft by the Denver Nuggets at the age of 19.
The terrorist attacks in Belgium killed 31 people, injuring hundreds more. This came months after the attacks in France, perpetrated by the same terrorist group, killed 130 innocent civilians.
It’s times like these that we have to understand that while these attacks were carried out on foreign soil, they do impact those of us living in the United States.
Both of these Magic players are representations of this. Our thoughts go out to them and their homelands during these most difficult times.