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Jacob Blake shooting hits home to 49ers' Ward, his family

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The 49ers concluded practice on Wednesday before news spread of the Milwaukee Bucks’ decision to not take the court for their NBA playoff game in protest of the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The entire day of NBA action was shut down, and there was a trickle-down effect that included the postponement of the Giants-Dodgers game.

Inside the 49ers locker room, players have spoken among themselves about the shooting, 49ers safety Jimmie Ward said.

Ward, 29, is familiar with that area. He was born in Racine, Wisconsin, just 10 miles north of Kenosha on Lake Michigan. When he was 5 years old, Ward moved to Mobile, Alabama, where there lived his stepfather’s parents. He has two younger brothers who still live in Kenosha. 

“I know it’s getting pretty crazy there,” he said.

Ward said he reached out to his brothers to make sure they are doing fine.

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“I’ve been to Kenosha,” Ward said. “It’s rough in that area, and stuff like that happens all the time. Growing up in that type of environment and conditions, you just know what to do and what not to do.

“Not saying anything was wrong with what happened, not saying that anything was good with what happened, but I’m sorry for what happened. I’m sorry for the victim’s family, and I just hope going forward as a country that things get better for us.”