For anyone who follows sports, especially basketball, you hear a lot about Tony Parker, the NBA’s two-time All Star from France who is currently playing for the San Antonio Spurs. Now, although Tony grew up in France after moving there when he was just three weeks old and is a member of the French national basketball team, he was actually born in Belgium on May 17, 1982, and to an American father and a Dutch mother. His father, Tony Parker Sr., was a Loyola University Chicago basketball player who moved to Rouen when Tony was a baby to play for that city’s professional team. True to his French roots, Tony was initially more interested in soccer until he became a huge fan of Michael Jordan. He attended the prestigious French government-run Institut National du Sport (National Institute for Sports and Physical Education) in Paris. In spite of aggressive recruiting attempts by various NCAA schools, Parker remained in France. He played in the French national league for two years before being drafted by the Spurs in 2001. He is their starting point guard and has helped lead the team to three NBA Championships (2003, 2005, 2007). He was named the NBA Finals MVP in 2007.
The NBA star has a brother, Terence, who continues to play in the French league. Tony married the very famous American actress Eva Longoria in a lavish wedding at the Saint-Germain l’Auxerrois Church in Paris on July 7, 2007, with many of her Desperate Housewives co-stars in attendance. It was once the parish church of French kings.