Olympic gymnast Nastia Liukin is pantless on beach shores to remember the late Kobe Bryant. The 31-year-old five-time Olympic medalist yesterday joined countless celebrities in marking one year since the tragic passing of NBA superstar Kobe Bryant – the helicopter crash fronting media outlets in January 2020 killed a total of nine including Kobe’s daughter Gianna. Nastia, who was close with the Bryant family, took to Instagram on Tuesday night with a photo marking the anniversary. Check it out below.
Scroll for the photo. Bryant, close to the USA Women’s Gymnastics team and seeing fellow gymnast McKayla Maroney helped by the Los Angeles Lakers player, was also a poignant part of Nastia’s life. The 2008 all-around Olympic champion, who marked Bryant’s passing on Twitter, updated with a throwback of herself on the beach.
The photo, simple and serene, showed Nastia gazing out to sea and solo while in a black t-shirt with “BRYANT” on the back, plus the iconic 2 and 24 numbers.
Nastia also flew the flag for 24, Bryant’s Lakers number, plus 2, the youthful number of daughter Gigi.
“Sending you both so much love today and everyday,” Nastia wrote, tagging Kobe’s widow Vanessa Bryant, plus Gigi’s sister Natalia. Liukin had marked the passing of Kobe, writing:
“[Hard] to formulate words right now. thank you kobe. thank you for being such an inspiration. thank you for making me believe we are all so much more than our greatest accomplishments. will forever and ever remember you. praying so hard for your family… rest in peace kobe + gigi.”
See more photos below.
Liukin also shouted out Bryant back in 2017 with the above-posted photo, writing: “In honor of
getting both 8 and 24 retired tonight by the
! Congrats Kobe! We are lucky to know you + constantly be inspired by you! .”
Meanwhile, Vanessa yesterday made headlines for mourning the first anniversary of her late husband’s death, also sharing a powerful letter from Gianna’s best friend. The basketball superstar also trended on Twitter as the world realized that it has, indeed, been one year. More below.
Nastia, who retired aged just 22 back in 2012, has been making headlines. In 2020, it was for a high-profile anorexia storm as fan DM asked the gymnast how she feels about “promoting borderline anorexia looking bodies.” Shortly before the holidays, Liukin inked a movie deal in “Little Gymnasts,” with 2021 bringing more headlines as the blonde appeared in a promo for Facebook App.
Nastia has 1 million Instagram followers. If you missed her causing a “situation” in her frontless top, just scroll.