Coby White Opens Up About His Father's Passing

The No. 7 overall pick lost his father to liver cancer in 2017

Zach Gelb
July 02, 2019 - 1:54 pm
Coby White

USA Today Images


Perhaps you know that the Chicago Bulls selected Coby White with the seventh overall pick in the NBA Draft. What you might not know, however, is that White lost his father, Doc, to liver cancer when White was just 17.

Needless to say, this has been a bittersweet time for White and his family.

“It’s an exciting time for my family, but it’s also an emotional time, just because he’s not here with us,” White said on The Zach Gelb Show. “But it’s life. I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason, so I know he’s in heaven smiling down on us.”

Doc introduced his son to basketball. They would watch Rocky movies together. Doc was White’s hero.

Losing him was indescribable.

“I think the thing that helped me was just being surrounded by those that you love,” White said. “One thing that hurt me was that I never opened up about it, and that kind of hurt me. So I encourage them to open up to someone that they trust.”

A grieving White also learned the power of prayer.

“That’s what helped me,” he said. “Whoever their higher figure is, I feel like they should just get closer to them and talk to them a lot more. Everybody is not the same, but like I said, everything happens for a reason. . . . I feel more comfortable (talking about) it. I’ve been doing a lot of interviews, and people are asking about him. It’s starting to come easier. I feel like I helped a lot of people. A lot of people reached out. I just hope that I influenced them. I encourage other people to open up about difficult stuff that’s going on in their life.”