Though he's an internationally famous basketball player and reality TV star today, there was once a point in time when Lamar Odom's financial future was in doubt.
Odom was raised in New York by his single mother, Cathy, who enrolled in him a private Catholic school in the hopes of providing him a strong education. She died of colon cancer when he was just 12, but her life insurance policy allowed Odom to continue his schooling. That financially stability gave Odom the confidence to pursue a college degree instead of jumping straight to professional basketball after high school, something he says he was grateful for.
"I'm sure my mom didn't think she would die at age 35, but that didn't stop her from doing the responsible thing and buying life insurance," said Odom. "Her wise decision gave me the foundation to move on in my life, and played a big role in making me the person I am today. When I began my pro career, one of the first things I did was buy life insurance to make sure that my loved ones would always be taken care of."
Coming off his seventh season with the Los Angeles Lakers, Odom is the national spokesperson for the LIFE Foundation's Life Insurance Awareness Month.