Tony Brown Death: Why NBA Referee died at the age of 55 ?

The veteran NBA official Tony Brown passed away Friday after a protracted health battle. Continue reading to find out how Tony Brown passed away, what happened to him, and what caused his passing.

In a statement, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said that Tony Brown was one of the league’s most accomplished referees and an example to his fellow officials.

Who was Tony Brown?

Brown, a star basketball player in high school, received a scholarship at Florida A&M but decided to transfer to Clark College, which is now Clark Atlanta University. Brown supported himself while attending college by working for Delta Air Lines because he was not eligible for any scholarships.

He worked for Delta until his retirement in 2007 and performed duties such as cleaning aircraft and operating passenger carts before becoming a flight attendant. After working the 2018 All-Star Game in Los Angeles, he was selected to work the 2021 All-Star Game in Atlanta.

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His other referees for that 2021 match were Tom Washington and Courtney Kirkland, two additional Atlantans who, like Brown, had their degrees from historically Black institutions and universities. The NBA had committed to using that match to promote HBCUs and raise more than $3 million for scholarship grants.

In the days leading up to that game, Brown told the AP, “The most significant thing of this entire game, for us, is that we are representing the NBA officials and we have to execute outstanding work for them. Doing our jobs is the greatest honour and accomplishment we can have. Even in his final days, Brown didn’t focus on himself.

His family and friends put in a lot of effort in the days before his death to raise funds for a scholarship for Clark Atlanta players. While Brown was receiving hospice care earlier this month, some Clark Atlanta players visited him and presented him with a jersey as a mark of their thanks.

How did Tony Brown die?

American professional basketball coach and ex-player Anthony William Brown hails from the United States. He eventually played in the NBA and other countries. Brown refereed more than 1,100 NBA games in just under two decades. On October 20, 2022, Brown sadly passed away. On Thursday, Tony Brown’s family confirmed his passing.

“Tony Brown was one of the most outstanding referees in the NBA and an inspiration to his colleagues,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement. Following a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer early in the previous year, Tony bravely went through several rounds of treatment to return to work this past season at the NBA Replay Center, exemplifying the commitment, tenacity, and passion that made him such a well-liked official for 20 years.

 Cause of Tony Brown’s Dead at 55

In April 2021, Tony Brown’s Stage 4 pancreatic cancer was discovered, but he overcame it well enough to work in the NBA replay unit the previous year. His family claims that he only recently began receiving hospice care in Atlanta. Cancer was Tony Brown’s cause of death.

Sadly, Brown’s cancer caused him to pass away at the hospital. After experiencing stomach aches that he initially attributed to bad sushi, he was eventually given a cancer diagnosis. Brown underwent more than twelve rounds of intense chemotherapy, but thanks to the assistance of his medical team, he was able to make a full recovery.

I haven’t had time to sit around and be like ‘Why me?’ or ‘What am I going to do?’” Brown said in an interview this year. He also added, “Me not fighting would have made me feel like I was letting people down. What kind of example was I going to be to my kids if I just laid in this bed and let it overtake me? I had to show my kids that there’s nothing in life that you can’t challenge and overcome if you have a positive mindset.”

The Brown’s spouse Tina Taylor-Brown and their kids Bailey, Basile, and Baylen all survived him. A statement was sent by his family. Throughout this path of gaining strength, acceptance, and peace, “we are and have been nourished by the consistent outpouring of love and support,” the statement added.

Tony Brown Obituary

NBRA Officials posted,

Our brother Tony Brown passed today after his fearless fight against pancreatic cancer. Tony was a son, father, and friend who will be missed every day and remembered in every moment. Instead of flowers, the family asks for donations to his Endowment at CAU.

Chris Haynes tweeted,

NBA veteran official Tony Brown passed away today following a hard-fought bout with cancer. He was one of the best running sidelines and one cool brother. Rest In Peace.”

The Sky Box posted,

NBA veteran official Tony Brown passed away today following a hard-fought bout with cancer. Brown has officiated 1,016 regular-season games and 25 playoff games in 17 seasons as an NBA official. He also worked the 2018 NBA All-Star Game in Los Angeles. R.I.P.


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