NBA coach was kidnapped along with his family while returning from…

Steve Kerr drove out of his birthplace of Beirut the last time he visited, with bombs pounding the runway and his father’s assassination just six months away.

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The airport was shut down. There was discussion about traveling to Tel Aviv in a helicopter with an ambassador, visiting Cyprus on a cruise ship, or even entering Israel by bus. There was an empty seat on a military aircraft bound for Cairo, but it was taken by someone else. At last, a

That August day in 1983, Malcolm H. Kerr, the president of the American University of Beirut, wrote to other family members, “I’m fearful that all this uncertainty and inconvenience, not to mention even a sense of physical danger, has not done Steve’s image of Beirut much good, and in his present mood he wonders what any of us are doing here.”

Malcolm Kerr was shot twice in the back of the head outside his university office a few months later.

Steve Kerr was a reserved, sports-mad eighteen-year-old. In the days before the University of Arizona became a basketball powerhouse, he was a lightly recruited freshman. It required a strong imagination to envision him leading the Golden State Warriors and emerging as an N.B.A. champion both as a player and coach.

However, it might not come as a surprise that Kerr, at 51, has found a voice in public discourse and discusses a wide range of topics, including

Middle East policy, gun control, protests during the playing of the national anthem, and presidential politics are all relevant to basketball. He chews through the gray areas in a world that increasingly paints itself in stark contrasts, entering conversations that most others in his position purposely avoid or know very little about with an evenhanded and educated approach.




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