Atlanta Hawks rookie swingman DeAndre Bembry spoke with the NBPA’s Jared Zwerling about his younger brother, Adrian. The younger Bembry was shot and killed in Charlotte trying to break up a fight two weeks before the NBA Draft.
DeAndre had a very close relationship with Adrian, which explains why he chose to wear the No. 95 on his jersey for his rookie season in Atlanta. Adrian was born in 1995.
DeAndre detailed just how close he was to his brother to Zwerling:
We were with each other almost everyday, whether it was us outside playing manhunt or us in the house playing Grand Theft Auto: Vice City or Madden. Or it was being outside in the creek somewhere or in the woods playing football—things we did when we were living in Charlotte. We were with each other most of our life, almost every hour.
It was like the regular big brother, little brother connection—beat him up every time for fun, a love-hate relationship. I remember the first time I went to college. The first week went by and then he started calling me crying because he missed me. And he was like 17, 18 at the time. I’m, like, “What’s the problem, bro?” And he just started crying, like, “I miss you.” There were plenty of moments that stand out, but that’s definitely one of them.
To honor Adrian, DeAndre will be doing charity events for gun violence prevention. He even notes that what happened to Adrian, was something Adrian was trying to prevent:
It’s crazy how something like that actually ended up happening to him. Gun violence prevention is one of the things my brother actually wanted to do.
What sparked that interest as well is one of our cousins’ brothers got shot about three years ago. Some people just ran up on him and he got shot at his mother’s house, and he died. The four of us, including our cousins, were always together when we were younger.
DeAndre also told Zwerling that he and his mother plan on getting matching tattoos to honor Adrian.
In what has been such an awful tragedy, it’s been amazing to see how well DeAndre has carried himself, and how he’s already working to help stop gun violence.
We’re really going to enjoy having him here in Atlanta.