Keon Lawrence, former Seton Hall Pirates player, and Weequahic High School standout, has died at the age of 32.
The cause of death was not immediately revealed, but according to a statement posted on fan Facebook page called Newark Boy’s High School Basketball, he was rushed to the hospital on November 28 and was in ICU before he died.
The basketball fan page later confirmed his passing.
“Sorry to announce the passing of Keon Lawrence a tough loss for the City of Newark. A great high school player at Weequahic and went on to play at Missouri and Seton Hall. Rest Easy fella.”
Tributes pour in on Twitter
Following news of his passing, members of Essex County communities in the State of New Jersey and fans across the country have been paying tribute and expressing condolences on social media.
RIP Keon Lawrence, Former Pirate 😢 pic.twitter.com/ZL46zQiBhg
— Sharon Orr (@MamaOrr) November 29, 2019
RIP – One of Essex County's all time greats, Keon Lawrence. NJHoops' 1st team all-state and state leading scorer in 2006. pic.twitter.com/Ss1LhPlmUz
— NJ Hoops (@NJHoops) November 29, 2019
Keon Lawrence was one of the best high school hoopers EVER! Beyond what he did on the court he is a great soul and a father.
— 🥊JAB JULIEИ🥊 (@JabJulien) November 29, 2019
Damn R.I.P Keon Lawrence. One of the toughest dudes I played against. Boy was a hooper
— Kashif Pratt (@kashpratt11) November 29, 2019
Rest in peace to an Essex county and Weequahic high school great who was also at one time a Seton Hall Pirate, Keon Lawrence. My prayers go out to Keon and his family.
— Patrick Tonero (@PTonero) November 29, 2019
Keon Lawrence is a Jersey legend. I use to look up to that generation of hoopers in Jersey when I was a youngin. This shit is crazy. RIP 🙏🏿
— The Black Uncle Jesse (@zayblacknofood) November 29, 2019
Man rip to a real hopper Keon Lawrence #alwaysapirate
— Cory Hershey (@cmhershey1) November 29, 2019
Rest In Peace, Keon Lawrence. 🌹
— aaron geramipoor (@AaronGeramipoor) November 30, 2019
It's a very sad day in the Seton Hall University Pirates Community.
RIP Keon Lawrence
— bob sumner (@bobsumner24) November 29, 2019
R.I.P. to Keon Lawrence… dude was a animal on that court he sauced up a lot of niggas including myself 😂😂😂… died too young but def one of Newark's Finest
— G_973 (@G_973) November 30, 2019
Damn RIP Keon Lawrence!
— tony (@tony2_times) November 29, 2019
SHU has to win this… lets win this for Keon… RIP Keon Lawrence
— Traveldisney (@vacaassistant) November 29, 2019
Sad day for Essex County NJ basketball. RIP Keon Lawrence #Jerseylegend
— Ashton Gibbs (@AshtonGibbs12) November 29, 2019
Who was Keon Lawrence?
Keon Lawrence, a native of Newark, New Jersey, was born on October 1, 1987.
The 6-foot-2-inch, 177-pound shooting guard established a reputation as an elite scorer at Weequahic High School, Newark, New Jersey. After graduating from Weequahic in 2005, he played with the Missouri Tigers. During his two years at Missouri, he averaged about 11 points per game.
After he left Missouri, he sat out a year before entering Seton Hall. During his senior year at Seton Hall, he was suspended from the team after “a violation of team rules and an ongoing pattern of conduct unbecoming of a representative of Seton Hall athletics,” according to Bleacher Report.
According to NJ.com, the Seton Hall Pirates suspended Lawrence, then 22 years old, after he was involved in an accident on the Garden State Parkway. He was charged with DUI on a suspended license. The accident happened after he went the wrong way in the southbound express lane in Sayreville. Another driver suffered injuries in the crash.
Lawrence was undrafted in the 2011 NBA Draft and remained an unrestricted free agent.
He later left for Norway where he played in the Norwegian Basketball Premier League for Tromsø Storm (2014-2019).