Photo Source: Los Angeles Times
On a Sunday morning, January 26, 2020, the world was in shock and disbelief when a helicopter incident was reported to have killed NBA legend, Kobe Bean Bryant and his 13 year old daughter, Gianna Bryant.
The first official report of the crash was reported by the Los Angeles County fire department at 9:47 am PST. People who live near the scene quickly noticed unfamiliar sounds of a nearby helicopter and pieces and parts of a vehicle on unoccupied land near their homes, with smoke noticeable from miles away. The crash has left no survivors.
The news broke down to the media as TMZ was one of the first to report it. Celebrities and players were in disbelief and couldn’t process the news, as most Angelenos.
People were upset that the news had first been introduced through a TMZ source when the victim’s families had yet to be notified. The sheriff of LA County felt it was a very inappropriate act from TMZ.
“It would be extremely disrespectful to understand that your loved one … perished and you learn about it from TMZ,” stated Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva.
The undersheriff also pleaded with the tabloid news source to please allow families to be notified before the news breaks out to the world, and not let the family discover their loss on a TMZ source.
The basketball world has taken a big hit with this tragic news. People understand how important he was to the game and the community, how every player looked up to him as well as his strong mentality.
In Los Angeles, he will always be remembered for winning 5 titles and being ranked a top 5 scoring leader for the NBA.
Kobe Bryant came to the league at the age of 17, opting to skip college and coming straight from high school. In his 20 seasons being in the league, Kobe has accomplished everything a kid could dream of. Kobe Bryant has visited the NBA finals 7 times and is a 5x Champion, winning a three-peat in 2000 (vs the Pacers), 2001 (vs the 76ers), and 2002 (vs the Nets) with iconic teammate Shaquille O’Neal. The other two were won in the years 2009 (against the Magic) and 2010 (against the Celtics). Bryant was also a one time MVP (2008 Season) and was first-team all NBA 10 times.
Kobe Bryant had a phenomenal career as he inspired many athletes in the world with the work he put into basketball. After he retired from the NBA in 2016, Kobe has produced a short film called Dear Basketball, which won an Oscar in 2018 for Best Animated Short Film. Kobe has also spoken to the basketball community. Kobe was encouraging players and athletes to pursue their goals or he’ll create one for them. For example, Kobe tweeted to a player from the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo, to win the MVP award the upcoming 2018 season, and he succeeded in the 2019 season. Kobe was all about giving back, whether it is from inspiration, motivation, or any physical training for that matter. Kobe had recently worked out and trained Kawhi Leonard, Kyrie Irving, Paul George, as well as many other incredible athletes that were apart of the Mamba Sports Academy.
But most importantly, he was great as an overall person, as well as a father. There were a total of nine victims: Kobe Bryant, Gianna Bryant, Keri Altobelli, John Altobelli, Alyssa Altobelli, Sarah & Payton Chester, Christina Mauser, and the pilot, Ara Zobayan.
Since the incident has occurred, the Lakers vs Clippers game on the 28th of Jan has been postponed to a later date soon to be announced. Also, the first Lakers home game to take place since Kobe’s death has staples center to skyrockets the tickets. The nosebleeds as known as the 300’s were as expensive as $800 per seat.
Every story has relevance. Every life has meaning. Everyone’s passing matters. We never know when our time is. Let’s not take things for granted and appreciate what we have around us. Our beloved people, family, and friends. Don’t forget to spread the love.
By Jeremy Tejeda (Features Editor)