NBA star Karl-Anthony Towns has received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine ... one week before the anniversary of his mother's tragic coronavirus-related death.

The 25-year-old Minnesota Timberwolves center shared the news on Tuesday ... posting a pic of the moment he took the needle in his left arm, while giving a big thumbs up.

Of course, the Towns family was greatly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic -- KAT's mother, Jacqueline, tested positive in March 2020 and the symptoms were severe. At one point, doctors placed her in a medically induced coma due in hopes of saving her life -- but it didn't work and she passed away on April 13.