Jamison: 'His time here, he really made a difference'

December 09, 2009|By Sports Digest

Former Wizards owner Abe Pollin was remembered as a civic-minded visionary, passionate sportsman and generous philanthropist at a public memorial service Tuesday night in Washington. "He's done all these things for so many people, not only here in this country, but in other countries as well. Kids he's helped out with all the scholarships that he's given," said Basketball Hall of Fame guard Earl Monroe, who played for Pollin's Baltimore Bullets from 1967 to 1971. "Those are the things that will live on long after today. That legacy that he's leaving, this is what it's all about." Pollin, 85, died Nov. 24 from corticobasal degeneration, a rare brain disease. Pollin had donated $3 million toward finding a cure for the brain condition at the time of his death. Tuesday's public memorial service was held at Verizon Center, which Pollin built with his own money and opened in 1997 as the home of the Wizards and the NHL's Washington Capitals. Photos of Pollin, who made his fortune in construction, were displayed on the scoreboard hanging over the court, along with video and photos of significant moments of his life. The entire Wizards team attended the ceremony, along with fans, former players, co-workers and employees, and those touched by Pollin's kindness. "He believed in people," Wizards forward Antawn Jamison said before the ceremony. "He believed in this city when people didn't believe in this city. ... His time here, he really made a difference."

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