Updated: Feb 17, 2020
If you have ever thrown a balled-up piece of paper into a garbage can and yelled “Kobe”, this is for you.
On Sunday, January 26, 2020 we lost an icon; Kobe Bean Bryant, his daughter Gianna Bryant, lovingly nicknamed #Mambacita, along with seven other passengers (baseball coach John Altobelli, his wife Keri and their daughter Alyssa; mother and daughter Sarah and Payton Chester; Mamba Academy basketball coach Christina Mauser and pilot Ara Zobayan.) in a fatal helicopter crash - it has been reported that the crash took place in Calabasas, CA at approximately 9:47 a.m.
Kobe Bryant was an athlete’s athlete and a hero to the youth. SO many men and women of all ages admired Bryant's skills, work ethic, and overall awesomeness aspiring to harness his skill and tenacity and become just like him. The world will never forget Bryant's historic 81 point game on January 22, 2006 when the L. A. Lakers played against the Toronto Raptors. Bryant went on to play many more notable games and went out with a bang scoring 60 points in his victorious final game against the Utah Jazz . Our generation has known Kobe Bryant to be an NBA All-Star and devoted Los Angeles Lakers player, proudly wearing the numbers 8 & 24 until he retired in 2016.
After Bryant’s retirement, he dedicated his time to family. During and after a successful 20 year career, Kobe worked with The Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation (founded in 2006), an initiative dedicated to improving the lives of youth and families in need by providing financial resources, awareness and more. Kobe also spent time coaching his daughter, the late Gianna a.k.a. Mambacita, who many described as Kobe’s prodigy and another legend in the making, the ins and outs of a game he loved.
Friends and family named Bryant as an extraordinary Father, unmatched talent and lifelong learner.This alone proves that Bryant was an excellent role model to the young and the old and we were blessed to witness the fruits of his faith, and dedication to family and basketball. Though he and the other passengers have most certainly gone too soon, we all pray that God will rest their souls, and bless those who are left to grieve their presence with peace and pleasant memories of the impact they had on our lives.
Special prayers go out to Vanessa Bryant and her family as well as the other families and friends who are affected by this great loss.
By India P. + Ayana B.W.