Players and Fans Remember Margo Dydek

Margo Dydek passed away late Thursday night at the age of 37
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As news of Margo Dydek's passing was delivered late Thursday night, WNBA players and fans took to Twitter to express their love and support for the 7-foot-2 former WNBA All-Star.

The Seattle Storm�s Lauren Jackson was quick to express her pain over the news via her Twitter account with an ode to Dydek. �Life is far too short,� she Tweeted. �:-( RIP MD.�

Candace Parker Tweeted, "Margo Dydek will be greatly missed. Everyone that knew her knows how special she truly was. I am deeply saddened ..."

Tina Thompson, who spent a number of years playing against Dydek as a member of the Houston Comets, Tweeted, �My condolences to the family of Margo Dydek, may she rest in peace! Tall in stature and huge in heart, a beautiful person with like spirit!�

Dydek, a Polish national who joined the WNBA family as a first overall pick in 1998, left a big impression on fellow countryman and Phoenix Suns center Marcin Gortat. When news began to surface a week before her death that Dydek had suffered a heart attack at her home in Brisbane, Australia, Gortat had asked his Twitter followers to pray for her and her family. His reaction following the upsetting news was no less sincere.

�Margo dydek left us couple hours ago...REST IN PEACE!U were a great basketball player and even better person of[f] the court,� he Tweeted, later adding, �Inspiration for many people and kids! True role model. Basketball world will miss u a lot! I will pray for u and ur familly!!!!�

The pain of losing Dydek also resonated through the league front offices, as WNBA President Laurel J. Richie issued a statement Friday afternoon.

Lisa Leslie, who ranks second all-time behind Dydek in total blocks, offered her condolences. �Wow, I am shocked and sad to hear about the loss of such a wonderful person, mom an wife,� Tweeted Leslie. �RIP Margo Dydek! God bless your family!�

Sparks Vice President and General Manager Penny Toler issued the following statement: "Not only was Margo a great basketball player, she was one of the kindest people I had the opportunity to play against and later work with. I was saddened to hear about her passing at such a young age. Her memory will live on, not only with the Sparks but with the entire WNBA. Our deepest sympathies go out to her family."

Dydek spent 10 seasons with the WNBA, playing for the Utah Starzz, San Antonio Silver Stars, Connecticut Sun and Los Angeles Sparks before retiring after the 2008 season. Prior to joining the WNBA, Dydek spent six years playing professionally in Europe. She ranks first all-time in total blocks (877), blocks per game (2.72) and seventh all-time on the WNBA leading list of rebounders with a total of 2,143.

News of Dydek's passing resonates with players who lost a former teammate and friends and fans lost an idol. As the basketball world continues to mourn the loss of Dydek, she will forever be remembered as the biggest player on the court with an even bigger heart off it.