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Bill Bellamy Describes Growing Up with 2nd Cousin Shaquille O’Neal Amidst the Latter’s Constant Movement Across Continents

Jay Mahesh Lokegaonkar

Bill Bellamy Describes Growing Up with 2nd Cousin Shaquille O'Neal Amidst the Latter's Constant Movement Across Continents

Shaquille O’Neal‘s life is an open book as he rarely holds back from sharing his experiences with the world, whether positive or negative. However, the Hall of Famer has rarely spoken about his second cousin, stand-up comedian and actor Bill Bellamy. The former MTV VJ was asked about his relationship with his cousin during a recent interview with Vlad TV.

Bellamy said that their relationship didn’t blossom like he would have liked it to because Shaq moved around a lot during their childhood. The big man’s father, Sergeant Phillip A. Harrison’s job in the military compelled him to move around continents with his family. That’s why the two cousins barely saw each other when they were young.

However, they connected when they both found success in the early 1990s. Bellamy said,

“We literally got hot at the same time, which was unbelievable! I’m on MTV when Shaquille was coming in the league and it literally came full circle we was like, ‘Yooooo we here.’ It was electric. Next thing you know, we feel like we both representing Jersey to the fullest.”

1993 was a massive year in both Shaq and Bellamy’s life. While the former was winding up his incredible rookie season with the Orlando Magic on his way to superstardom, the latter landed a gig hosting MTV Beach House and even starred in two movies.

They continued to enjoy success in their respective careers before their paths finally crossed professionally when O’Neal and Hakeem Olajuwon appeared on an episode of MTV Jams Countdown.

The duo’s chemistry together was brilliant and hilarious at the same time. Their personalities and energies were in complete sync, prompting the question why they didn’t spend more time when they were growing up. However, as mentioned before, there’s a pretty good reason for it.

Shaquille O’Neal’s nomadic early life

Both Shaquille O’Neal and Bill Bellamy were born in New Jersey, but the former has never called the city his hometown. Bellamy explained the reason behind it during his sit-down with DJ Vlad,

“It was interesting because Shaquille moved around a lot, you know what I’m saying? So, it wasn’t as close as I would have liked because with his stepfather and the way they was moving in the military, he was in New York for two, three years and then he’s gone. Now they in Texas.”

As Bellamy explained, O’Neal’s mother, Lucille, married his stepfather, Phillip Harrison, and the family would follow the Sergeant wherever he’d be posted. Despite the instability in his life due to Harrison’s career, the Hall of Famer was grateful for everything his stepfather did for him.

Shaq spent a lot of time in Germany as a child because of his his father’s job. His experiences in different parts of the world made him the global citizen he is today.

Post Edited By:Satagni Sikder

About the author

Jay Mahesh Lokegaonkar

Jay Mahesh Lokegaonkar


Jay Lokegaonkar is a basketball journalist who has been following the sports as a fan 2005. He has worked in a slew of roles covering the NBA, including writer, editor, content manager, social media manager, and head of content since 2018. However, his primary passion is writing about the NBA. Especially throwback stories about the league's iconic players and franchises. Revisiting incredible tales and bringing scarcely believable stories to readers are one his main interests as a writer.

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