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Big 12 women's basketball tournament: Sharane Campbell is driven to play hard after loss of nephew

The Sooners begin Big 12 Tournament play Saturday against Texas. Once the season is over, though, the junior guard wants to research Sudden Infant Death Syndrome — and why it happened to 5-month-old Kuron.
by Jason Kersey Published: March 7, 2014

NORMAN — Morgan Hook remembers the moment two years ago when she felt like she really knew Sharane Campbell.

Then a freshman Oklahoma basketball player, Campbell was running around managing everything at her nephew’s funeral.

“She just ran the funeral basically,” Hook said. “That’s when we realized who Sharane Campbell was.”

The junior guard is known for her basketball skills. She was on The Oklahoman’s Super 5 team after her senior year at Star Spencer, and is averaging 12.4 points and 5.2 rebounds per game this season for the Sooners, who open Big 12 Tournament play Saturday night against Texas inside the Chesapeake Energy Arena.

But truly understanding Campbell and what drives her begins and ends with the tragic loss of her 5-month-old nephew Kuron, who died two years ago of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

“Not even just in basketball,” Campbell said. “I’m just always trying to let everybody know that it happens.”

SIDS is one of the leading causes of death for infants, and is largely impossible to predict or see coming.

That is why the months following Kuron’s sudden death, the Campbell family found it difficult to wrap their heads around what had happened that night while he was sleeping.

“We just didn’t understand,” said Renee Campbell, Sharane’s sister and Kuron’s mother. “That’s how it was for the first couple months, which led us to do more research and kinda try to figure out what’s going on.”

Sharane Campbell was just a couple of months into her college career, trying to adapt to a new home and a new environment when Kuron died. She had class and practice responsibilities when all she wanted to do was be with her sister.

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by Jason Kersey
OU Sports Reporter
Jason Kersey became The Oklahoman's OU football beat writer in May 2012 after a year covering high school sports and OSU recruiting. Before joining the newspaper in November 2006 as a part-time results clerk, he covered high school football for...
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