Ken Griffey Jr. Is a Proud Dad of Three Grown-Up Kids — Meet the MLB Hall of Famer's Family
The celebrated Seattle Mariners outfielder is the proud father of three grown children that are all currently pursuing their own sports careers, and "Junior" is happy to support them at every step of the way.
50-year-old former Seattle Mariners star Ken "The Kid" Griffey Jr. has a long list of achievements and accolades after spending two decades as a professional baseball player, doing justice to his father's name.
Griffey Jr. not only continued his father's legacy as a respected baseball star but also by becoming a father himself, and he has recently shown this lesser-known side of him to the public in a documentary feature.
Here's what you need to know about Griffey Jr. and his immediate family before you get to watch "Junior" on the MLB Network.
A FAMILY MAN
Ken Griffey Jr. has earned many recognitions in his Major League Baseball career, but in 2016, when, already retired, he was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, he made clear that the title he loved the most was that of a father.
As much as he tried to contain himself, the father-of-three couldn't refrain from getting emotional when he took to the stage for the Hall of Fame induction speech.
According to a Seattle Times feature about Griffey Jr.'s induction, fellow Hall of Famers had told the groundbreaking player that it was inevitable to reach a breaking point while on the podium. For Griffey Jr., it was his children.
"Once I started looking at the kids, it made it a little tough. I could look at anybody else and go, 'All right, I'm good.' I think those three are the only ones that can do that to me. They mean everything to me," Griffey Jr. admitted back then.
During his 20-minute-long speech, Griffey Jr. also paid tribute to his father Ken Griffey Sr. -- a baseball legend in his own right -- and his mother Birdie.
Griffey Jr. also took a moment to acknowledge the love and support of his wife of nearly 30 years, Melissa, sharing that he knew he was going to marry her the first time they met.
Melissa, Griffey Sr., and Griffey Jr.'s two younger children were in attendance during the ceremony, while his older child Ken Griffey III, known as Trey, sent him a text message that the proud Griffey Jr. read on stage with teary eyes.
Besides Griffey Jr.'s emotional display during his Hall of Fame induction, the former outfielder has opened up about his experience and views on fatherhood.
In March 2015, Griffey Jr. gave an interview at his Florida home, where he stressed that his family always came first for him.
At the time of the interview, the retired MLB player was getting ready to spend spring break and summer break with his children, with the two oldest having already left home to attend the University of Arizona.
After a 22-year career in professional baseball, Griffey Jr. was happy to enjoy his children, and he has always been interested in his children's progress in the sports of their choice.
While he is still a Florida resident, Griffey Jr. and his family purchased a home in Tucson, Arizona, where his older son Trey and his only daughter played American football and basketball, respectively.
More recently, Griffey Jr. got probably one of his best Father's Day gifts when a 90-minute documentary about him premiered on the MLB Network. It gave him another opportunity to talk about what being a father is to him.
Ahead of the premiere of the film, titled "Junior," Griffey Jr. appeared in a Zoom conference call with the media, as is now the norm due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He shared how happy he was that his children collaborated in the documentary.
Griffey Jr. revealed that he had previously been more private about his family life to protect his children, but now that the youngest is already 18, he feels they are old enough to show the world a different side of their father.
The Hall of Famer also talked about how he wanted his children to work for what they want and not to rely on their father's status and wealth to reach their dreams. He added that he thinks, so far, they have done an excellent job.
26-year-old Trey Griffey is the oldest of three children Griffey Jr. shares with his wife, Melissa. In 2013, Trey began attending the University of Arizona, where he joined the football team.
Trey was eighteen when he was recruited by the team, prompting him to leave the family home in Florida to follow his own dreams of becoming a sports star.
Trey was preparing himself for his first game as an Arizona University Wildcat when his father was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, and that's why he couldn't be present at the ceremony.
"He's as hard-working of a kid as we have in our program. He's a great teammate, and he's earning everything he's getting," Trey's Arizona football coach Rich Rodriguez said about Griffey Jr.'s oldest in 2015.
24-year-old Taryn Kennedy Griffey is Griffey Jr.'s middle child and his only daughter. Like her older brother Trey, Taryn enrolled in the University of Arizona and became a college athlete, but her sport of choice is basketball.
Taryn started playing with the Wildcats in 2015, after graduating from Dr. Phillips High School in Orlando, Florida, where she was named Brighthouse Player of the Year and earned Most Valuable Player honors.
Griffey Jr. regularly attends Taryn's college basketball games, and the team's coach Niya Butts once praised him for his humble attitude while visiting during practice.
YOUNGER CHILD TEVIN
18-year-old Tevin Kendall Griffey is Griffey Jr. and Melissa's youngest child, and he graduated from high school just recently.
"They had one of the coolest coaching staffs. And they personally want you to be there. There was a lot of one on one time with each coach, and they made you feel at home," Tevin said about the team at the time.
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