Courtesy of Undefeated here are some pictures and words from Dick Nowitzki.
Africa Wedding – Bridegroom & Groom
Africa Wedding – Bridegroom
Jessica Olsson ( in Short Afro )
Dirk, Jessica, and two of three children
Dirk & Jessica at an Event
- Meet up
- The two met at a charity event for the Sports for Education and Economic Development (SEED) Project on a snowy night in February 2010. It was NBA All-Star weekend in Dallas. The Senegal-based nonprofit used basketball as a platform to engage youths in academic, athletic and leadership programs.
- Nowitzki was tricked into raising his hand during an auction that resulted in him making a major donation in exchange for a Rolando Diaz painting. He also agreed to go on two dates for charity. But he was also hoping to get a real date with a beautiful woman he met that night named Jessica Olsson, who was working at a Dallas art gallery.
- “What made her so special? What made me fall in love with her? First of all, she’s got to be attractive. That’s obviously part of it,” Nowitzki said with a big smile. “And I think we just clicked intellectually. She likes art, she likes sports. Her brothers both played soccer, they were professional.
- She grew up around sports. We both love tennis and we love to travel. We both love kids and family.”
- Nowitzki and Olsson made their first big public appearance on July 13, 2011, when they were on the red carpet at The ESPYS awards together. They received a lot of comments on Twitter when he kissed her after winning an award during the televised show. The Twitter chatter was not necessarily negative, but it was race-related.
- ESPY – NBA and WNBA Stars
- Then-Philadelphia 76ers guard Evan Turner tweeted: “Well I’ll be damned. Dirk got him a sister.”
- The Sacramento Kings rookie center Hassan Whiteside tweeted: “Dirk got himself a black girl hahaha.”
- Then-Washington Wizards guard Jordan Crawford tweeted: “He got a black squeeze!”
- NBA star Candace Parker used the line “jungle fever” on Twitter and wrote “love it” after they smooched.
- Growing Up
- The Nowitzki family has quickly grown, as they now have three children, a girl and two younger boys. They all went back to Kenya last summer. The plan is for the Nowitzki children to spend time in Kenya and Germany yearly to learn their heritage. Olsson’s mother has died since the wedding, but there are still a lot of family members in Kenya whom the Nowitzkis want their kids to know.
- “This past summer we stayed like two weeks,” Nowitzki said. “She’s got uncles, cousins. Her grandmother’s still alive. She’s almost a hundred. It’s a special place for our family. We want our kids to meet some of their cousins, so we try to go down there every summer. Maybe we’ll get a house down there …
- “We don’t want them to just grow up [in Dallas]. We were gone for three months this past summer. We want to show them different cultures, different languages so they can grow up, become educated and make educated decisions when they’re older on where they want to live, what they want to do.”
- Raising Biracial Kids
- Nowitzki is now 38 years old and in the twilight of his projected Hall of Fame career. Upon his NBA retirement, the Nowitzkis are expected to reside primarily in Dallas. Olsson has been living in Dallas for about a dozen years and has lots of friends and some family there, too. But Nowitzki knows that there will be some challenges that his children, most notably his boys, could face being black in America.
- Nowitzki described what he saw in 2016 as “not pretty” in terms of racial and social justice. He believes that education, respect and discipline are key to keeping his children out of harm’s way.
- “In your head you’re saying it’s 2016, this stuff shouldn’t be happening in our society,” Nowitzki said. “That’s a little scary to every parent. You’re just trying to educate your kids so eventually if they do find themselves in a situation, they can talk themselves out of it or make the right decisions, make the right reads …
- “You always worry for your kids. Are they going to fall out the crib? Are they going to make the right decision later? Who they’re dating? Are they going to run into a cop one of these days? You always worry as a parent. That’s something for sure that’s in the back of your mind, but eventually educate them the right way and keep teaching them how to respond.
- “You react to authority when somebody speaks to you, like teachers, parents or whoever. You have to educate them early enough so they know, this is a person, the higher authority, you need to show them some respect.”
- Nowitzki recalls his father playing “no games” with him as a child and having a belt hanging over a lamp if needed for discipline. Nowitzki said he instills discipline and respect with his kids, but also love.
- “What I’m trying to do now with my kids is raise them with love,” Nowitzki said. “So they got to show you authority, got to show some respect. Not anything goes. That’s not how it works around here.
- “So you try to find a nice little mix where they feel the love. But also, they feel a tough hand every now and then.”