Kobe Bryant- A Legend Gone Too Soon


NBA legend, Kobe Bryant, unexpectedly passed away on Sunday, January 26, 2020, due to a helicopter accident outside of Los Angeles. His daughter, Gianna Bryant was with him. Kobe, Gianna, and seven others, John Altobelli, a champion baseball coach from Orange Coast College, his wife Keri and daughter Alyssa, also Christina Mauser, Sarah Chester, Payton Chester, along with the helicopter pilot, Ara Zobayan. They were on their way to a AAU basketball game. They were given special permission to fly despite the foggy conditions; however, they were flying too low and crashed into a hillside.  

Kobe Bryant was an NBA MVP who had a 20-year career with the Lakers that began when he was 18. Bryant graduated from Lower Merion High School in Philadelphia, and was immediately drafted into the NBA, being  the youngest basketball player in  NBA history to be drafted.

USA Today says, “Bryant retired in 2016 as a five-time NBA champion, 11-time All-NBA first-team selection, 2008 MVP, two-time Finals MVP, 18-time All-Star and four-time All-Star MVP who spent his 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers. He also won gold medals with USA Basketball at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and 2012 London Olympics.” Bryant is also the fourth-leading scorer in NBA history with 33,643 points!   LeBron James just passed him by 12 points the day before the helicopter accident.

Bryant got married at 19 to Vanessa Cornejo Urbieta, a 17-year-old model.  Bryant was the father of four daughters, Gianna, 13, Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri, 7 months old. Bryant’s father was also a professional basketball player. His daughter, Gianna, took her dad’s skills on the court. She always reminded people that her dad didn’t need a son to continue the family legacy. “Gianna was ‘hellbent’ on playing for Geno Auriemma, a coach of the famed women’s basketball team at the University of Connecticut and one day for the WNBA,” her dad said.

Kobe Bryant will always be a legend in basketball. Everywhere. Rest in Peace, Mamba.