Cleveland Cavaliers star Shaquille O’Neal was so touched by the story of Shaniya Davis, he decided to cover the cost of the five-year-old’s funeral.
Earlier this month, the body of the young girl was found dead after her mother prostituted her to pay off a drug debt. Shaniya’s body was found off a rural road in Sanford, North Carolina. While watching the events unfold, O’Neal reached out to the family of the little girl to see how he could help.
“I was sitting at home watching it on the news and the story brought a tear to my eye,” he told The Cleveland Plain Dealer.
O’Neal agreed to pay for the entire funeral service, which was held Sunday at Manna Church in Fayetteville, North Carolina. According to reports, 2,000 people attended.
The child’s mother, Antionette Davis, has been charged with human trafficking and child abuse involving prostitution. —Linda Hobbs
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