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If you look at the list of the most famous sportsman in the world, you will surely find the name, LeBron James. He is arguably one of the world’s best and most famous athletes for his impressive play on the court. 

LeBron James since he was in high school, has been dominating basketball, and so with such a career, you might think he was having one of the easiest life. But it is the opposite, if you think his LeBron James life story might have been tough, the truth is it was tougher than you might think. 

His off-court struggles, hard childhood, efforts to reach success, and contributions to society will tell his tragic real-life story.

LeBron James childhood

LeBron James' achievements

LeBron James in full LeBron Raymone James was born on December 30th, 1984 in Akron, Ohio. He was born to Gloria Marie James, who became a mother at only 16 years old, and his father Anthony McClelland. 

His father had problems with alcohol and since James’ birth, his father decided to abandon them. His father was an ex-convict and was not interested in raising the children, so his mother raised him as a single parent. 

The first years were really hard because his mother had no good employment and had to go through several family homes and even in shelters. They faced poverty and street violence and struggled at times to live life seeing drugs, guns, and killings. 

He used to sleep on the couch in a one-bedroom apartment that belonged to another of his mother’s friends and sometimes parties continued late into the night and police were sometimes called to investigate noise violations. 

LeBron James early school life

As a kid, James LeBron started showing tremendous skill in basketball, and it was highlighted by his natural speed, strength, and stature. So his mother managed to give him the best gift and it was a basketball and a hoop. So he spent time playing and perfecting his skill for this game. 

He attended St. Vincent High School where he received so much attention for his basketball skill. But LeBron James was always taller than other children of his same age. Therefore he had problems when he entered the school and had problems socializing and presented depression symptoms and preferred to be alone playing basketball.

LeBron shifted between houses, where in a single year he used to live in as many as six locations. He chose not to go to school and spent his days immersed in video games, shuttling between the apartment and a corner store where his mother’s food stamps paid for his snacks. 

LeBron James life with the coach

LeBron had a sports coach called Frankie Walker with whom he built a close relationship. He was the one who introduced him to basketball. He used to push him to be better and to fight for his dreams. Frankie Walker learned that James was skipping school and had nearly dropped out of fourth grade. So he spoke to his mother to make him stay with him when he was nine years old. 

His mother realizing that he would be better off with a more stable family, allowed him to live with the family of Frank Walker. So he took James into his family and treated him as his own. James obtained meaning for his life at home, athletics, and school while he lived with Walker. 

As a result, LeBron obtained good school results. Walker began teaching him to play basketball and trained him for three years. 18 months later, he returned home.  But again the economic problems arose and Gloria sent James with Walker again. 

Then Walker decided to help Gloria pay for rent, allowing James to finally return to live with his mother. 

LeBron James and the basketball

LeBron James biography

He learned to socialize and meet young people of his age. With four of his friends, he formed a team known as the Fab Four. He was already 2.00 meters tall at the age of 17 and his team at the institute was the Fighting Irish. 

He achieved extraordinary results figures of 2,657 points, 892 rebounds, and 523 assists. He was named Mr. Basketball on three consecutive occasions, best Player of the Institute 2003, and received trophies of MVP. He as a very young person full of longing and desire wanted to enter the NBA Draft and didn’t want to finish high school. But his mother and Walker did not allow it. 

He was so much recognized and some of his national matches were televised. Upon leaving high school, his mother and Walker decided to enroll in St. Vincent-St. Mary High School. 

He became a success with his team, and their expertise and skills to play were greatly admired increasing the popularity of the institute. To play and represent the Institute, their mentors demanded that they must maintain high grades. He played with shirt number 23, for being the number of his idol Michael Jordan.

James for his talents in basketball and football received recognition throughout Akron. He became a standout on Saint Vincent-Saint Mary High School’s (SVSM) football and basketball teams with support from his teammates and coaches. James garnered greater statewide and national recognition.

LeBron James and SVSM lost in the state final in his standout junior football season. Then he turned his attention to the hardwood and thought to focus on basketball full-time. James had kept a B-average in high school, which meant he’d have more agency to choose his college. 

Nike and Adidas were both competing to sign him as an athlete. With this, James went into his junior season as fierce as ever and took SVSM on another state finals run. Although his team lost, James garnered even more attention from the NBA.

In his senior season, James and his team bounced back and became state champions. Cleveland Cavaliers team selected LeBron James in first place in the 2003 NBA Draft and he made his debut against Sacramento Kings, in which he scored 25 points, 6 rebounds, 9 assists, and 4 steals. He scored 13 points in the decisive victory of his team in the second season. 

In the third year of his career, he qualified for the playoffs but fell for the first time in the semifinals against the Detroit Pistons. After three more campaigns with the Cavaliers, and admirable results, he changed teams at the end of his contract.

Michael Jordan invited him to a private workout where he scrimmaged the likes of Juwan Howard, Penny Hardaway, Michael Finley, and Antoine Walker.

LeBron James basketball career

Although he lose his record and failed to make the playoffs in his first season in the league, James had a season with the Cavaliers and received the NBA Rookie of the Year Award, and became the first Cleveland Cavalier to do so. 

James began to establish himself as the future of the NBA from the years of 2004 to 2008. James was selected to his first All-Star team in his second year in the league.  For the second year in a row, even though the Cavs failed to make the playoffs. 

In the 2005-2006 season, he contributed to the team’s first playoff appearance since 1998. The Cavs made it to the second round, beating the Washington Wizards before losing to the Detroit Pistons. In his fourth and fifth seasons, James averaged above 25 points per game. LeBron led the Cavs to the NBA Finals in 2007, but he struggled to score and the team was swept by the San Antonio Spurs. 

LeBron James playing basketball

The NBA saw a new side of LeBron James between 2008 and 2010. LeBron led the Cavs to a franchise record 66-16 and after posting impressive averages of 28.4 points per game, 7.6 rebounds per game, and 7.2 rebounds per game, he won the NBA MVP that year.

During the 2009-2010 season, his points per game average reached 29.7 and his assists also increased to 8.6 per game. He once again took the Cavaliers to the playoffs. 

LeBron James became an unrestricted free agent and he made the decision to leave for the Miami Heat spending the next 4 seasons in Miami, winning back-to-back NBA Championships in 2012 and 2013 and two Finals MVPs alongside Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade, who were two of the most elite players in the league.

LeBron James’ achievements

He was a part of the American team which was his great dream and won the bronze medal in the Olympic Games in 2004. In the 2007 FIBA America championship in Las Vegas, he was Victorious and won the bronze medal at the 2006 World Cup in Japan and gold at the Olympics in Beijing in 2008 and London in 2012.

Since his youth, he was a prominent player and broke a multitude of Records as the youngest player to win the All-Star MVP award at the age of 21.  This gave him Fame and signed a contract with Nike worth 90 million dollars.  In 2008, he appeared in the magazine Vogue and marked a milestone to be the first black man to be on the cover of so recognized magazine. 

A documentary film was made based on his life called More than a game. 

LeBron James’ personal life

James is married to Savannah Brinson, his high school sweetheart. He proposed to her on On January 1, 2012and got married on September 14, 2013, in a private ceremony with about 200 guests in San Diego. James and Brinson have two sons and one daughter together. 

His struggles 

Being a teenager he struggled with sudden fame and became one of the most famous people in the world.  The constant hype and attention turned him into a self-admitted jerk.  When he was 17 years old, he appeared on the cover of Sports and everyone was buzzing around him and his high school teammates making him an unlikable guy and portrayed as a big-headed jerk. 

LeBron James at the 2022 NBA All-Star Game

He has dealt with racism. And being one of the greatest players in NBA history, he came with a lot of hate. And some fans have taken it too far.

He also faced injuries where a sprained right ankle cost him three games in the 2003-2004 season and he had to miss another three with a sprained left ankle in 2005-2006. a sprained finger sidelined made him miss five games from 2007 to 2008. Ankle sprains and some elbow trouble cost him a total of six games between 2009 to 2010 and he had to face many more similar injuries. 

His social works 

He is also extremely philanthropic and he tactfully uses his fame, power, and resources to carry out charitable ventures in deprived neighborhoods. Lebron James never forgot the humble beginnings he came from. Because without the help and encouragement of mentors like his mother and the Walker family, he might have not achieved the success he has. His talent as a basketball player and his humanitarian spirit has inspired Lebron to give back. 

LeBron James social work

He started a foundation LeBron James Family Foundation in 2004, along with his mother Gloria, to help out children and single-parent families in need. The foundation raised money and donated to charity for many years. It began to raise money for children in Akron to have help with education and a place to go after school. It developed into a program to help “at-risk” children of Akron in a variety of ways.

The goal is to keep kids in school and encourage them to graduate. It begins in the third grade when students need to reach state standards to move up to the fourth grade.

Most recently, Lebron James donated money for the exhibit at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture’s exhibit honoring boxing legend Muhammad Ali and designated $2.5 million of the proceeds from ESPN’s “The Decision” special to Boys and Girls Clubs of America. Lebron is involved in Miami’s club that helps give all children equal opportunities and provides after-school mentoring and activities. 

There are many more social services done by Lebron James and this shows him as a great human.

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