How Did Jerry Buss Die? Uncovering the Truth Behind His Death


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How Did Jerry Buss Die?

Jerry Buss born Gerald Hatten Buss on January 27, 1933, was an iconic figure in the world of sports particularly in the realm of basketball. As the majority owner of the Los Angeles Lakers, his influence on the game and the NBA as a whole was profound. But how did this influential figure meet his end?

Jerry Buss was not just a businessman; he was a chemist philanthropist and visionary. He owned the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA) and was responsible for the team winning 10 league championships, especially during the Showtime era in the 1980s. His contributions to the sport led to his induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

Quick Facts About How Did Jerry Buss Die?

NameJerry Buss
Death YearFebruary 18, 2013.
Age at Death80
Known ForOwnership of the Los Angeles Lakers
TributeMagic Johnson described Jerry Buss as his mentor, stating:
“Without Dr. Jerry Buss, there is no Magic.” (via The LA Times)
Family InvolvementJerry Buss involved his family in the Lakers organization,
which continues as a family business to this day.

Jerry Buss’s Early Life and Business Career

Born in Salt Lake City Jerry Buss faced challenges from a young age. Raised by his mother after his father abandoned the family he moved to Los Angeles at the age of nine. Despite the hardships, Jerry Buss was determined to succeed. He worked various jobs during his youth from setting pins at a bowling alley to selling stamps. His academic pursuits led him to earn a Ph.D. in physical chemistry by the age of 24. However, it was his investment in real estate that truly set the stage for his future success. Starting with a mere $1000 investment in a West Los Angeles apartment building Buss soon found immense success in the real estate sector.

Sports Team Ownership

Buss’s love for sports was evident in his ownership of various sports franchises. Apart from the Lakers he owned the Los Angeles Strings of World Team Tennis and had a significant stake in the Los Angeles Kings of the NHL. The Lakers under his ownership saw immense success winning championships with legendary players like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Magic Johnson and Kobe Bryant.


Buss’s generosity wasn’t limited to the world of sports. In 2008 he donated $7.5 million to USC’s Department of Chemistry funding endowed chairs and scholarships. He also extended his philanthropy to those associated with the Lakers ensuring they were taken care of even in challenging times.

Jerry Buss’s Personal Life

Jerry Buss’s personal life was as dynamic as his professional one. He had seven known children with his marriage to JoAnn Mueller ending in divorce in 1972. Known for his playboy image Jerry Buss had relationships with several women over the years.

What was the cause of his death?

Jerry Buss, the renowned Lakers owner, faced significant health issues in 2012, leading to his absence from Lakers games by January 2013. It was disclosed on February 14, 2013, that Buss had been fighting cancer for nearly a year. Tragically, he passed away due to kidney failure on February 18, 2013, at 80 years old.


Jerry Buss’s journey from a young boy in Salt Lake City to the owner of one of the most successful NBA teams is nothing short of inspirational. His death was a significant loss to the world of sports but his legacy lives on through the Los Angeles Lakers and the countless lives he touched.


When was Jerry Buss born?

Jerry Buss was born on January 27, 1933.

What was Jerry Buss’s contribution to the NBA?

Jerry Buss was the majority owner of the Los Angeles Lakers and under his ownership, the team won 10 league championships.

Did Jerry Buss own any other sports teams?

Yes, apart from the Lakers he owned the Los Angeles Strings of World Team Tennis and had a significant stake in the Los Angeles Kings of the NHL.

When did Jerry Buss pass away?

Jerry Buss passed away on February 18, 2013.

What was the cause of Jerry Buss’s death?

Jerry Buss died of kidney failure.