Updated on Sunday, January 26, at 7:00 p.m. ET:
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has confirmed to the Los Angeles Times that nine people died today in a helicopter crash that killed basketball star Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna. CNN reported that Orange Coast College (OCC) baseball coach John Altobelli, his wife, Keri, and their daughter Alyssa were among the victims of the crash and had been on their way to a game at Mamba Sports Academy. OCC assistant coach Ron La Ruffa told CNN that Altobelli routinely flew with Bryant and their daughters to attend games together.
Updated on Sunday, January 26, at 4:15 p.m. ET:
ESPN reported that Kobe Bryant's 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, also died in the helicopter crash earlier this morning along with her former basketball-star father. According to the outlet, the father-daughter pair were reportedly on their way to a travel basketball game along with others on board. The crash is currently under investigation.
As noted by People, Gianna — aka Gigi — was a huge basketball fan herself. "Before Gigi got into basketball, I hardly watched it, but now that’s she’s into basketball, we watch every night," Bryant previously said during an appearance on the podcast All the Smoke. "We just had so much fun because it was the first time I was seeing the game through her eyes."
Former NBA player Kobe Bryant has died, TMZ reported.
According to the outlet, the former L.A. Lakers player was killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas on Sunday, January 26. Emergency personnel told TMZ that at least five people on board had died. The Los Angeles Times and Variety also reported that officials confirmed the basketball player was on the aircraft during the crash. Bryant was 41 years old at the time of his reported death.
Bryant played for the Lakers for 20 seasons after joining the NBA in 1996. He was an 18-time NBA All Star, and is considered one of the greatest basketball players of our time. He had four children with his wife, Vanessa Bryant.
On social media, devastated fans reacted to the news. “Kobe Bryant was a legend and staple in so many of our childhoods whether you watched basketball or not,” wrote YouTuber Marina Preciado. One fan called Bryant’s death “one of the saddest days in sports history,” while another wrote that “this transcends sports.” And as this Twitter user put it: “He was the reason I and hundreds of thousands of kids around the world picked up a basketball.”
This is a developing story. We will update it as more information becomes available.
Originally Appeared on Teen Vogue