Gia Allemand died from an apparent suicide on August 14th. She was not only a former contestant on “The Bachelor”, but she was also girlfriend of Pelicans’ forward Ryan Anderson. Anderson hadn’t said much, if all, since the death, but before the preseason game against the Magic, he spoke to the media about it, via the Orlando Sentinel:
“My faith is what gets me though. Things don’t happen…that doesn’t happen for no reason,” he said.
“I know where Gia’s heart was at. I know where she’s at. She’s in heaven right now. She’s incredibly happy. She’s pain-free. She’s not feeling that way anymore. And now it’s my mission that God has given me to voice this, to help a lot of people through her story. I’m really going to focus a lot on that.
“I feel like that’s why I’m here. Basketball isn’t why I’m here. This is why God put me on Earth.”
Near tears and his voice cracking, Anderson said getting through every day is a challenge.
“Every day’s a roller-coaster, man. Every day is hard,” he said. “I miss her every second…but I owe this to her. I owe this to myself. I don’t want to just be a basketball player and go home and have my life just revolve around that.
“I want it to be about changing lives, be a difference-maker. This has really helped me grow up.”
Anderson is known for his strong Christian faith, and you have to respect his attitude. This is really tragic, and it’s good to see his teammates rally around him as well. We hope for the best for Anderson and Allemand’s family, and death is certainly something that you don’t take lightly. Bullying, depression, and suicide is a serious issue in this country, and I believe Anderson will do good to combat it. I hope you have the best season of your career, Ryan–I’m rooting for you.