Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant passed away from a helicopter crash on this past Sunday morning that killed all passengers on board.
Around 10:00 AM California time, the first report regarding Kobe Bryant’s passing hit the internet. The pioneer news outlet was TMZ, which led to speculations that the story could be faked, with consideration to TMZ’s reputation of unreliability.
As the story developed and continues to, many other outlets began to report on TMZ’s report rather than giving confirmation, in lieu of the idea that the story could be untrue. However, with much sadness, authorities later confirmed Bryant did not survive.
With more information flooding in regarding the details of the tragic crash, this story has also brought attention to Lower Merion as a town and Lower Merion High School, where Bryant famously was drafted to the NBA from in 1996. On Sunday evening, many students gathered at Lower Merion high school to pay tributes to Bryant. Basketballs, flowers, and other tributes were placed outside of the famous Kobe Bryant Gymnasium. Additionally, many students paid tributes at Lower Merion’s Kobe Bryant memorial.
TMZ Reported the following:
Kobe Bryant died in a helicoper crash in Calabasas Sunday morning … TMZ Sports has confirmed.
Kobe was traveling with at least 3 other people in his private helicopter when it went down. A fire broke out. Emergency personnel responded, but nobody on board survived. 5 people are confirmed dead. We’re told Vanessa Bryant was not among those on board.
The cause of the crash is under investigation.
Kobe has famously used a helicopter to travel for years — dating back to when he played for the Lakers. He was known for commuting from Newport Beach, CA to the STAPLES Center in DTLA in his Sikorsky S-76 chopper.
KB is survived by his wife Vanessa, and their four daughters — Gianna, Natalia and Bianca and their newborn Capri.
Kobe has recently been spotted out at NBA games with his daughter Gianna — a rising star basketball player herself. Their youngest daughter, Capri, was just born in June 2019.
Kobe is widely considered one of the greatest NBA players of all time — making 18 All-Star teams during his 20 year career with the Lakers. He was a first-round pick in the 1996 draft, winning 5 NBA championships, 2 NBA Finals MVPs and he was the league MVP in ’08.
The Lakers famously retired both of Kobe’s jerseys, number 8 and 24 … the only player in team history to receive that honor.
Kobe’s accomplishments stand far outside of the basketball world. He won an Oscar for his short film, “Dear Basketball,” in 2018.