Keyshawn Johnson Jr. paid tribute to his 25-year-old sister, Maia Johnson-Hightower, on Instagram on Wednesday. The younger brother shared five pictures of himself alongside Maia. The beautiful photos ranged from Johnson Jr. being a toddler to a teenager, all with Maia by his side.
“Yesterday, I lost the one person in my life that is full blood. I lost my big sister Maia. Maia was undoubtedly my biggest role model growing up. I wanted to be nothing but a clone of her,” Keyshawn Johnson Jr. wrote on Instagram of Maia.
“I always thought she was the coolest person, had the coolest clothes, listened to the best music. Don’t know what I’m going to do without you. Just wish we were as close as we used to be. I’m sorry for that and I love you so much. I will see you soon 👼🏽💙 #LLMHJ,” he concluded the touching post.
The 22-year-old brother of Maia was only a few years younger than his sister. The siblings were obviously very close while growing up, and were Johnson’s first two children of four. He had Maia and Johnson Jr. with his first wife, Shikiri Hightower, in the ’90s.
Keyshawn Johnson Announces Daughter Maia’s Passing
Sadly, Keyshawn Johnson announced the death of his eldest child on Monday, March 15. It’s the last post any parent wants to have to share with their followers.
“It is with incredible sadness that I have to share the news about the passing of my beautiful Daughter Maia. Maia, as my first born child, has been the joy of my, and her Mother Shikiri’s, life,” Keyshawn Johnson wrote on his social media accounts.
“She came into our lives just as we were both coming of age as adults and has been a constant beloved presence for both of us. We are heartbroken and devastated by her loss. Shikiri, Maia’s siblings, our family and me appreciate your thoughts and prayers at this difficult time,” he added.
“We also all appreciate your support and respect for our privacy as we move forward. Thank you all, God Bless. Keyshawn Johnson, Sr.,” the NFL wide receiver concluded.
Johnson played for the New York Jets, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Dallas Cowboys, and Carolina Panthers during his professional career. He won Super Bowl XXXVII in 2002 with the Bucs. In 2007, Johnson retired from the NFL after catching 814 passes for 10,571 yards and 64 touchdowns.
Johnson now works for ESPN as an analyst in Los Angeles, California where he was a standout player for the USC Trojans.