Marilyn Nault was the third wife of NBA legend Bill Russell, who passed away on Sunday at the age of 88. She was born on January 15, 1950, in Concordia, Kansas, and moved to Seattle after graduating from high school. She worked as a jewelry salesperson and met Russell in the 1990s. They got married in 1996 and lived a happy life until her death in 2009. Here is everything you need to know about Marilyn Nault’s cause of death and her life with Bill Russell.
A Private and Loving Marriage
Marilyn Nault and Bill Russell were a very private couple who avoided the public eye during their 13 years of marriage. They did not have any children together, but Russell had three children from his previous marriage to Rose Swisher, whom he divorced in 1973. He also had a brief marriage to Dorothy Anstett, Miss USA of 1968, from 1977 to 1980.
Marilyn Nault was Russell’s third and longest-lasting wife. She supported him through his career as a basketball player, coach, and broadcaster. She also accompanied him on his travels around the world. According to Sportskeeda, they shared a passion for golf and often played together.
A Long Battle with Cancer
Marilyn Nault’s cause of death was cancer, which she had been fighting for a long time. She passed away on January 25, 2009, at the age of 59. Her death was shocking and unexpected for many people who knew her. A private funeral service was held in Seattle on January 26, 2009.
According to Dicy Trends, former NBA commissioner David Stern called Nault up a few weeks before her death to inform her that he was naming the Finals MVP award after her husband. Russell revealed in an interview with the NBA that this gesture meant a lot to him and his wife.
A Lasting Legacy
Marilyn Nault’s death affected Russell’s approach to life. He dedicated part of his life to fighting cancer and became a supporter of the Harold (and Carol) Pump Foundation, which is committed to curing cancer. He also met and married former professional golfer Jeannine Fiorito in 2018 when he was 84.
Marilyn Nault will always be remembered as a loving and loyal wife to one of the greatest basketball players of all time. She was by his side during his achievements and challenges. She was also a kind and generous person who touched many lives with her smile and warmth. She left behind a lasting legacy of love and courage.