- Vanessa Bryant released a statement about her husband Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna Bryant's death.
- Kobe and Gianna passed away in a helicopter accident on January 26.
Vanessa Bryant released a statement on Instagram three days after Lakers star Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Bryant passed away in a helicopter accident. In her post, Vanessa wrote "My girls and I want to thank the millions of people who’ve shown support and love during this horrific time. Thank you for all the prayers. We definitely need them. We are completely devastated by the sudden loss of my adoring husband, Kobe — the amazing father of our children; and my beautiful, sweet Gianna — a loving, thoughtful, and wonderful daughter, and amazing sister to Natalia, Bianka, and Capri. We are also devastated for the families who lost their loved ones on Sunday, and we share in their grief intimately."
The rest of her statement follows (along with links to help support other families affected by this tragedy):
"There aren’t enough words to describe our pain right now. I take comfort in knowing that Kobe and Gigi both knew that they were so deeply loved. We were so incredibly blessed to have them in our lives. I wish they were here with us forever. They were our beautiful blessings taken from us too soon. I’m not sure what our lives hold beyond today, and it’s impossible to imagine life without them. But we wake up each day, trying to keep pushing because Kobe, and our baby girl, Gigi, are shining on us to light the way. Our love for them is endless — and that’s to say, immeasurable. I just wish I could hug them, kiss them and bless them. Have them here with us, forever. Thank you for sharing your joy, your grief and your support with us. We ask that you grant us the respect and privacy we will need to navigate this new reality. To honor our Team Mamba family, the Mamba Sports Foundation has set up the MambaOnThree Fund to help support the other families affected by this tragedy. To donate, please go to MambaOnThree.org. To further Kobe and Gianna’s legacy in youth sports, please visit MambaSportsFoundation.org. Thank you so much for lifting us up in your prayers, and for loving Kobe, Gigi, Natalia, Bianka, Capri and me."
On Monday, January 27, the Lakers released a statement regarding Kobe's death and announced it would postpone the team's Tuesday game for a later date. The statement read:
"In consultation with the NBA League office, the game scheduled between the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers for Tuesday, January 28 will be postponed and scheduled for a future date. The Los Angeles Lakers would like to thank all of you for the tremendous outpouring of support and condolences. This is a very difficult time for all of us. We continue to support the Bryant family and will share more information as it is available."
Details surrounding the helicopter crash are still emerging, but it is thought that dense fog played a major role in the accident. (The pilot received special clearance from air traffic controllers to continue flying.) According to federal investigators, there was no black box on board, so there is no recording of what happened. In addition to Kobe and Gianna, seven others passed away at the site.
Kobe is survived by his wife and Gianna's mother, Vanessa Bryant, and his daughters and Gianna's sisters, Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri, 7 months.
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