“I’m Pretty Religious. I Believe in God”: Brittney Griner’s Father, Who Had Major Conflicts with Daughter, Showcases Change of Heart

Published 12/27/2022, 1:30 PM EST

The release of Brittney Griner from Russia after ten months was a huge relief for her family. Throughout her captivity, her family was not able to communicate with her. When she was given a nine-year sentence, it was a huge blow to her parents’ hopes of her return. However, the U.S. Government assured them about their efforts to bring Griner back as soon as possible. Finally, she was released on December 8 and their family had a huge sigh of relief. Meanwhile, Brittney Griner’s father, Raymond Griner, who had major conflicts with her daughter regarding her identity in the past, sounded off on her release earlier this month..

The Vietnam war veteran worked at a Texas sheriff’s office after his return to the country and retired as a sheriff’s deputy.

Raymond Griner never lost faith


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Raymond Griner gave an interview to Fox 26 earlier this month after the release of Brittney Griner. He thanked everyone that played a part in his daughter’s release. The veteran thanked President Joe Biden and his administration for their efforts to bring Griner back to the country. He then stated that he never lost hope about his daughter’s return and prayed for her freedom constantly.

“I had faith she was going to come home,” Raymond said. “I’m pretty religious. I believe in God. I just prayed a lot and put my faith in the Lord and turned it over to him. I knew she was going to come home. I just didn’t know exactly when.”

Raymond gave the interview on December 9, one day after Griner landed in the country. He noted that he would meet his daughter at the military base in San Antonio where she was taken after her return. Raymond further stated that his daughter’s release was the most important thing ever to him.


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The Phoenix Mercury star has a very close relationship with her father. However, that was not always the case.

Brittney Griner and her father

When Brittney Griner first came out as gay during her senior year in school, her mother, Sandra Griner was very accommodating, but her father was not. Raymond Griner even said that he does not want to raise her. So Griner moved out and lived with an assistant coach for a few months. It was one of the hardest phases of her life.


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Then her father finally came around and accepted her for who she is. Griner went back to her home and started living with her family before again moving out for college. The two were in constant touch ever since even if they were miles apart. But Griner’s detainment put that on hold for ten months. Now, the father and daughter duo are back together.



Bagavathi Eswaran

1142 articles

Bagavathi Eswaran is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. He has been playing the game of basketball for more than 20 years now and has also been following the NBA for more than 10 years. After not being able to go pro, this former college player decided to join the IT industry.

Edited By: Satagni Sikder