Basketball great LeBron James has a family that includes a wife who was his high school sweetheart, Savannah Brinson James, and three children.
He’s close to his mother, Gloria James, but his father was not in his life growing up, a heartbreak but also a driving force that LeBron has written movingly about. He also has a half-brother, although they do not appear to be close. All eyes were on James as he took the court on May 31, 2018 for the start of the NBA finals. That has a lot of people wondering more about King James’ family.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. LeBron James Met His Wife, Savannah James, In High School
It’s been quite a journey for LeBron James and his wife, Savannah James. She is the former Savannah Brinson, and they married in 2013. LeBron and Savannah were high school sweethearts.
Savannah was a cheerleader and high school softball player who met LeBron at a football game in Ohio. According to Sportster, at first, Savannah wasn’t aware that LeBron was a high school basketball phenom. When LeBron asked a friend to get her phone number, Savannah said no, although she took his.
It’s a long way from Outback to the NBA, where James has reached historic success. According to Forbes, by 2016, his net worth was already $275 million. He’s built the fortune on salary, endorsements, and sound investments.
Savannah has not forgotten her hometown in Ohio. She sponsors Prom Promise, Savannah’s I Promise Makeover, in which high school seniors are gifted with prom dresses and other items needed to attend prom, Ohio.com reports. Savannah has said that she started the event because some of her friends growing up couldn’t go to prom because they couldn’t afford it.
2. Beyonce & Jay-Z Performed at James’ Wedding to Savannah
The LeBron James/Savannah Brinson wedding was a star-studded affair, which is not surprising considering the couple’s prominence. It was attended by the likes of Beyonce and Jay-Z. In fact, according to Deadspin, they performed at the wedding.
It wasn’t an incredibly large wedding. Held at the Grand Del Mar Hotel, only about 200 guests received the coveted invite, according to Deadspin. The wedding was held in San Diego, California.
The song Beyonce and Jay-Z performed? Crazy in Love. LeBron has expressed his love for wife Savannah on Instagram, writing, “Happy Anniversary my ??!!!! They say time flies when you’re having a great time. Well they are right cause 4 years just flew by and I’m having a blast! I’m loving loving you @mrs_savannahrj and it makes me even more excited to see what our future holds! #MyQueen? #LiterallyDayOne #JamesGang??”
3. LeBron James & His Wife Have Three Children
When LeBron James became the youngest NBA player ever to score 30,000 points, his three children joined his wife in congratulating him. “His 13 and 10-year-old sons, his 3-year-old daughter and his wife all shared touching messages,” according to USA Today.
You can see the congratulations from LeBron’s family in the video compilation above. His children are Bryce, 10; LeBron Jr., 13; and Zhuri, 3. Savannah realized she was pregnant with LeBron’s first child at age 17.
“Congratulations my love, on being the youngest NBA player to score 30,000 points in your career,” LeBron’s wife said in the video. “I am so proud of you — beyond proud. I know the work that you put in day in and day out to be able to work at this high level, and I’m so proud of you. I hope that you are also proud of this moment. It’s a huge milestone for you, and you should celebrate yourself and be very proud of yourself. And we love you, and keep doing what you do. You got this.”
LeBron Jr. added, “Congratulations dad, on 30,000 points. I’m proud of you, but you know I taught you well.”
4. LeBron James Was Born to a Teenage Mother & His Father Wasn’t In His Life
LeBron James uses his mother’s last name. That’s because his father wasn’t very involved in his life growing up. His mother, who is named Gloria James, gave birth to him at the age of 16. His biological father was named Anthony McClelland. According to JockBio, McClelland “was an ex-con uninterested in being a parent. Gloria raised LeBron on her own.”
LeBron addressed one social media post to his absent dad. “Because of you Pops!” James wrote in the post. “Thanks all along. Could have said why me with u not being there but look what I made of myself.” You can see a photo of Anthony McClelland here.
He also wrote, “Like, ‘Wow, Dad, you know what, I don’t know you, I have no idea who you are, but because of you is part of the reason who I am today. The fuel that I use – you not being there – it’s part of the reason I grew up to become who I am. It’s part of the reason why I want to be hands-on with my endeavors. So me in a position allowing people around me to grow, that maybe wouldn’t have happened if I had two parents, two sisters, a dog, and a picket fence, you know?”
According to ESPN, Gloria said “the father was a casual sex partner named Anthony McClelland, who by now is well-known within the state and county penal systems. He’s been convicted of arson and theft, to name just two of his many transgressions.” Gloria also spent a few days in jail over the years, ESPN reported. The story reported that McClelland tried to reconnect with his son but LeBron wasn’t interested.
5. LeBron James Has a Half Brother
LeBron James was born in Akron, Ohio. He reportedly has a brother named Aaron, who was born to James’ father after the father left James’ mother.
It’s alleged that Aaron reached out to LeBron after Aaron’s mother died of cancer but LeBron did not respond.