Kobe Bryant’s widow, Vanessa Bryant, is posting more tributes to her husband and daughter in the aftermath of their tragic passing last week.
Kobe (41) and daughter Gianna (13) were flying to basketball camp in Kobe’s helicopter on January 26. The helicopter encountered bad weather in Calabasas, CA, causing the pilot to crash into a mountainside. The accident killed all 9 people on board.
Vanessa, who is 37, started with a photo of her late husband beaming with joy. She also revealed a sweet inside memory of the nicknames Kobe gave her.
Yesterday, Vanessa also shared multiple photos from a memorial ceremony for Gianna at her school, Harbor Day in Corona del Mar, CA. Friends, coaches, classmates and teachers gathered to pay tribute to Gigi, who was a rising basketball star. They also retired Gianna’s jersey.
Gianna’s nickname was “Mambacita,” a play on her dad’s famous nickname, “Mamba.”
Gianna’s basketball coach spoke highly of her talent. It’s clear Gianna was just like Kobe: focused, determined and hardworking.
“No matter who we were playing, she was gonna force her will and help us find a way to win. And she did just that,” he said. “She willed us to the finals and got her teammates to compete at a very high level.”
The coach even said that Gianna recently asked to play in the 8th grade boys’ game against a rival school.
“The fact is, Gigi could have played with those boys. She could have helped them win some games. She was definitely able to hold her own at that level…[she was] one of the fiercest competitors I’ve ever seen.”
Fellow basketball icon LeBron James’ post to Kobe on January 27 feels especially poignant. Kobe’s last tweet was to LeBron, congratulating him on surpassing his record on the NBA all-time scoring list. That night, LeBron had scored his 33,644th point in his NBA career.
Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother 💪🏾 #33644
— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) January 26, 2020
In LeBron’s Instagram tribute, he promises Kobe that he will carry on his legacy in basketball.
View this post on Instagram
I’m Not Ready but here I go. Man I sitting here trying to write something for this post but every time I try I begin crying again just thinking about you, niece Gigi and the friendship/bond/brotherhood we had! I literally just heard your voice Sunday morning before I left Philly to head back to LA. Didn’t think for one bit in a million years that would be the last conversation we’d have. WTF!! I’m heartbroken and devastated my brother!! 😢😢😢😢💔. Man I love you big bro. My heart goes to Vanessa and the kids. I promise you I’ll continue your legacy man! You mean so much to us all here especially #LakerNation💜💛 and it’s my responsibility to put this shit on my back and keep it going!! Please give me the strength from the heavens above and watch over me! I got US here! There’s so much more I want to say but just can’t right now because I can’t get through it! Until we meet again my brother!! #Mamba4Life❤️🙏🏾 #Gigi4Life❤️🙏🏾