Vanessa Bryant has done an amazing job of staying strong as we are nearing three months since her husband Kobe, daughter Gianna, and seven others passed away as a result of a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California. She also recently celebrated what would’ve been her 19-year anniversary of being married to Kobe. She posted a vase of roses as she said “Anniversary flowers from my Kobe. ❤️???Thank you for my red roses @nataliabryant #GiannaBryant #BiankaBryant #CapriBryant @jeffleatham Thank you for my beautiful pink floral bouquet @catmcdonnell7 @paugasol So thoughtful of all of you.
Prior to Kobe’s passing, he and Vanessa had a fourth daughter together named Capri. Vanessa just took to Instagram this afternoon to say that baby Capri recently turned 10 months. Many people are still grieving the loss of Kobe and Gianna along with dealing with the current coronavirus pandemic so this photo was definitely something that social needed to see during these challenging times. The responses were heartwarming as Instagram users said Capri looks like Kobe and Gianna and wished them a happy 10 months.
Last Friday at the WNBA Draft, WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert announced Gianna and her basketball teammates Alyssa Altobelli and Payton Chester as honorary draft picks. Altobelli and Chester were on board the helicopter with Kobe and Gianna. They were all heading to the Mamba Sports Academy to play in a game as Kobe was also going to be the head coach. It was always Gianna’s dream to play college basketball at the University of Connecticut and go on to play in the WNBA.
Vanessa ended up posting a video online thanking the WNBA for honoring Gigi while wearing Kobe’s orange WNBA shirt. Kobe was always a huge advocate for women’s basketball and praised these women for what they’ve done for the sport.
“Thank you so much for honoring my Gigi and selecting her to be an honorary draft pick this year. It would’ve been a dream come true for her,” Vanessa said. “She worked tirelessly every single day. She wanted to be one of the greatest athletes of all time, just like her daddy. So thank you. Thank you for honoring my little girl. Kobe and Gigi loved the WNBA…this is [Kobe’s] sweatshirt…I want to congratulate all of this year’s draft picks. So congratulations. Work hard. Never settle. Use that Mamba Mentality.”
Last week, on April 13, was also Mamba Day. This was the four-year anniversary of Kobe’s last NBA game where his Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Utah Jazz at home, 101-96, as he scored 60 points in the perfect way to close out his Hall of Fame career. He will be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame this fall. Among the other inductees will be Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett, WNBA legend, Tamika Catchings, and legendary NCAA Head Coach Eddie Sutton.