LA Lakers owner Jeanie Buss called Kobe Bryant 'family' in an emotional tribute, and said he inspired her to be a strong female leader in the NBA
Jeanie Buss, who owns the LA Lakers, posted a heartfelt tribute to Lakers legends Kobe Bryant, who died in a helicopter crash. She recalled a lunch in 2013 with Bryant and his daughter Gianna, who also killed in the crash. Buss said Bryant told Gianna in the meeting that he wanted to show her an example of a strong female leader in the NBA. Buss said that she believes Bryant had another purpose — to give her strength and inspiration after her own father's recent death.
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The owner of the Los Angeles Lakers posted an emotional tribute to Kobe Bryant, in which she said he was like family to her, and inspired her to be a strong, female leader in a male-dominated sport. Jeanie Buss posted a message to her Instagram page on Thursday praising the longtime Lakers player, who was killed alongside his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others in a helicopter crash on Sunday. Buss said she counts Bryant as family since her father, former Lakers owner Jerry Buss, "loved you like a son."
Kobe, I don’t know how to express what you mean to me, my family and the Los Angeles Lakers. My father loved you like a son, which makes us family. When you invited me to lunch shortly after my father passed away, I was struggling to find motivation and purpose. Kobe, you brought Gianna with you to spend some time with me. You explained that you wanted to show her that women can be leaders in the NBA, just like the men. At first, it seemed like an action of a devoted father setting an example for his daughter. But in actuality – and I am positively sure you knew EXACTLY what you were doing – what you did was give me the inspiration and strength I was searching for. I reflect on that day often and it makes me smile and it makes me strong. I call on that memory whenever I feel down and need a bit of courage. For everything you did on the court that filled me with so much joy and love, for all the lives you changed through basketball itself, it was that day with Gigi that reignited my drive and determination. Vanessa, Natalia, Bianka, and Capri - I am so sorry for your loss. We are grateful to have you in our lives and we will always be here for you. To the families that also lost loved ones on Sunday, the entire Laker family mourns with you. Laker Nation - we are one family grieving the loss of people we all loved dearly. We will mourn together, cry together but we will also heal together, love together and win TOGETHER. We love you. Kobe - that’s what you made you so unbelievably special. You not only inspired us towards greatness, you showed us the way. : : To learn more about how you can help the families affected by this tragedy go to MambaOnThree.org and to further Kobe and Gianna’s legacy in youth sports visit MambaSportsFoundation.org #peace #love #joy #family #Mamba #Mambacita #2 #8 #24 : : Picture taken in February 2016 on the way to #NBAAllStar game in #Toronto A post shared by Jeanie Buss (@jeaniebuss) on Jan 30, 2020 at 9:05am PST on Jan 30, 2020 at 9:05am PST
She said she, like all Lakers fans, are "one family grieving the loss of people we all loved dearly." She recounted a 2013 meeting with Bryant and Gianna, not long after Jerry Buss died, which she said helps inspire her as a high-powered woman in the NBA. Buss said Bryant brought Gianna with her to a lunch, and said it was "to show her that women can be leaders in the NBA, just like the men." However, she said, she believes Bryant also wanted to inspire her.
"I am positively sure you knew EXACTLY what you were doing," she wrote. "What you did was give me the inspiration and strength I was searching for. I reflect on that day often and it makes me smile and it makes me strong. "I call on that memory whenever I feel down and need a bit of courage. For everything you did on the court that filled me with so much joy and love, for all the lives you changed through basketball itself, it was that day with Gigi that reignited my drive and determination." The Lakers postponed a game with the LA Clippers which had been meant to take place on Tuesday, as a mark of respect for Bryant. The new date has yet to be announced.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: 5 things about the NFL that football fans may not know
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'Now he got me having to look at another crying meme for the next 3 years': Michael Jordan provided a moment of levity at the memorial service for Kobe and Gigi Bryant
The NBA world mourned the loss of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gigi at the Staples...The NBA world mourned the loss of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gigi at the Staples Center on Monday. Celebrities from Los Angeles as well as superstars from around the NBA gathered to pay their respects to Bryant, and share stories of their time with him. During his time at the podium, Michael Jordan provided the crowd with a much needed moment of levity, joking that he would once again become a meme as "Crying Jordan" after tearing up on stage. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. The NBA world gathered at the Staples Center in Los Angeles to mourn the loss of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna "Gigi" Bryant on Monday. While the gathering was a somber one, there were moments of levity, with former teammates sharing fond memories of the Lakers superstar, and former rivals paying their respects to Bryant one last time. Michael Jordan offered a touching eulogy for Bryant. "Kobe left nothing in the tank," Jordan began. "He left it all on the floor." "Kobe was my dear friend, he was like my little brother," Jordan said. "Everybody always wanted to talk about the comparisons between he and I. I just wanted to talk about Kobe." At one point, Jordan teared up, and provided a much-needed moment of levity in the midst of some depressing circumstances, referencing the "Crying Jordan" meme that was inescapable for years. "Now he's got me... I'll have to look at another crying meme for the next..." Jordan said, tears streaming down his face, before getting cut off by laughs and applause. "I told my wife I wasn't going to do this because I didn't want to see this for the next three or four years. That is what Kobe Bryant does to me." Michael Jordan provides some comic relief at the #KobeFarewell by bringing up his crying meme. 🤣 pic.twitter.com/7kAo7UxqPZ — Sporting News (@sportingnews) February 24, 2020 You can watch Jordan's whole speech below. “As I got to know him, I wanted to be the best big brother that I could be.”Michael Jordan on Kobe Bryant. pic.twitter.com/dTSp7VDosP — NBA TV (@NBATV) February 24, 2020 Read more: 'She was so full of life': Vanessa Bryant laments not being able to watch her daughter grow up at the memorial for Gianna and Kobe Michael Jordan's birthday party in Chicago featured a replica of Kobe Bryant's Lakers jersey — made entirely out of flowers Players and coaches at Kobe Bryant's Mamba Sports Academy describe the devastating moment they heard about the athlete's death WATCH: Los Angeles Lakers honor Kobe Bryant with stunning video celebration of his life and career This timeline shows everything we know — and what we don't — about the helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant, his daughter, and 7 other peopleJoin the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: 5 things about the NFL that football fans may not know
Vanessa Bryant announced a fund to direct donations to other families of victims of the helicopter crash that killed Kobe and Gianna
Vanessa Bryant, wife of late NBA icon Kobe Bryant, set up a fund to support the...Vanessa Bryant, wife of late NBA icon Kobe Bryant, set up a fund to support the families of the seven other people who died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, on Sunday. The crash killed her husband Kobe Bryant and their 13-year-old daughter Gianna "Gigi" Bryant. Bryant wrote announced the fund on Instagram, and said it is being set up in conjunction with Kobe Bryant's youth sports charity, the Mamba Sports Foundation, in order to further Kobe and Gianna's legacy. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Vanessa Bryant has started a fund in order to support the families of those killed in the Sikorsky S-76 helicopter crash on Sunday. The crash killed her husband and NBA icon Kobe Bryant, their daughter, 13-year-old daughter Gianna "Gigi" Bryant, and seven others on board including the pilot. On Wednesday, Bryant posted on Instagram about the crash, thanking the "millions of people who've shown support and love during this horrific time." My girls and I want to thank the millions of people who’ve shown support and love during this horrific time. Thank you for all the prayers. We definitely need them. We are completely devastated by the sudden loss of my adoring husband, Kobe — the amazing father of our children; and my beautiful, sweet Gianna — a loving, thoughtful, and wonderful daughter, and amazing sister to Natalia, Bianka, and Capri. We are also devastated for the families who lost their loved ones on Sunday, and we share in their grief intimately. There aren’t enough words to describe our pain right now. I take comfort in knowing that Kobe and Gigi both knew that they were so deeply loved. We were so incredibly blessed to have them in our lives. I wish they were here with us forever. They were our beautiful blessings taken from us too soon. I’m not sure what our lives hold beyond today, and it’s impossible to imagine life without them. But we wake up each day, trying to keep pushing because Kobe, and our baby girl, Gigi, are shining on us to light the way. Our love for them is endless — and that’s to say, immeasurable. I just wish I could hug them, kiss them and bless them. Have them here with us, forever. Thank you for sharing your joy, your grief and your support with us. We ask that you grant us the respect and privacy we will need to navigate this new reality. To honor our Team Mamba family, the Mamba Sports Foundation has set up the MambaOnThree Fund to help support the other families affected by this tragedy. To donate, please go to MambaOnThree.org. To further Kobe and Gianna’s legacy in youth sports, please visit MambaSportsFoundation.org. Thank you so much for lifting us up in your prayers, and for loving Kobe, Gigi, Natalia, Bianka, Capri and me. #Mamba #Mambacita #GirlsDad #DaddysGirls #Family ❤️ A post shared by Vanessa Bryant 🦋 (@vanessabryant) on Jan 29, 2020 at 4:59pm PST on Jan 29, 2020 at 4:59pm PST She also announced a new fund called MambaOnThree Foundation set up to support the families affected by the tragedy. The new fund is being set up in conjunction with Kobe Bryant's youth sports charity, the Mamba Sports Foundation, in order to further Kobe and Gianna's legacy, she said. "We ask that you grant us the respect and privacy we will need to navigate this new reality," she wrote in her post. According to its website, the MambaOnThree Fund "was created to honor Team Mamba's mantra, 'Mamba on Three.'" "It's with that customary chant for togetherness, sisterhood and the ability to take on every challenge that this Fund was named," the website says. The site says all proceeds from the fund will be directed to the families of the other victims. The National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration are investigating the crash. SEE ALSO: This timeline shows everything we know — and what we don't — about the helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant, his daughter, and 7 other people Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: A 45-year-long study discovered trends in successful hyper-intelligent children
Basketball icon Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash on Sunday in Calabasas, California. He was...Basketball icon Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash on Sunday in Calabasas, California. He was 41. Several news outlets reported that Bryant was in his private helicopter. Nine people died in the crash, according to the Los Angeles sheriff. There was no black box aboard the Sikorsky S-76 aircraft, and the cause of the crash is still under investigation. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more. Basketball icon Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash on Sunday in Calabasas, California, roughly 30 miles northwest of Los Angeles. He was 41. His daughter Gianna "Gigi" Bryant also died in the crash, according to TMZ and ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. Several news outlets reported Bryant was in his private helicopter with several other people when it crashed. The Los Angeles sheriff said nine people died in the crash, which happened at about 10 a.m. "It is with great sadness that we learn of the death of Kobe Bryant and four others in a helicopter crash in Calabasas," Calabasas Mayor Alicia Weintraub said in a press conference on Sunday. Weintraub said that the helicopter crashed in a field and no one on the ground was hurt. Authorities said the helicopter was a Sikorsky S-76 model. On Monday, officials from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) held a briefing and said drones were mapping out the area of the wreckage. The FBI is assisting with evidence collection, the transportation officials said. The local coroner was still gathering the remains of the victims on Monday. The NTSB said the disposition of the helicopter at the time of the crash was not yet clear. Pieces of the helicopter were scattered around the hillside near the main impact point. The debris field spans as wide as about 600 feet. NTSB board member Jennifer Homendy called crash scene "pretty devastating" and said that survival would have been unlikely. The cause of the crash is still under investigation. The NTSB is still investigating if weather played a role and called on members of the public to send in photos of the weather in the area in order to assess flying conditions on the day of the crash. "Initial information shows the helicopter was flying under visual flight rules from John Wayne Airport to just southeast of Burbank Airport," Homendy said about the helicopter's flight path. Homendy said that the helicopter circled for 12 minutes while awaiting clearance from air traffic controllers. Then, the helicopter climbed to around 2,300 feet to avoid a cloud layer and shortly after started a descening left turn. The last radar contact with the helicopter was around 9:45 a.m., consistent to the accident's location. Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said the department is protecting the area surrounding the crash to prevent trespassers from accessing the site. Pepperdine Graphic, Pepperdine University's student-run newspaper, published a tweet on Sunday that showed an image of what appeared to be the helicopter and smoke in the distance. An NBA legend Bryant spent his 20-season career entirely with the Los Angeles Lakers. He was the third all-time scorer in the NBA and won five NBA championships. He was born August 23, 1978, in Philadelphia but for most of his childhood lived in Italy, where his father played basketball. In 1996 Bryant joined the NBA after graduating from high school. Bryant was often referred to by his self-given nickname "Black Mamba," a type of snake, which signified his prowess and competitive attitude. Bryant was the second-highest-paid NBA player of all time, having earned an estimated $323 million from his NBA career salary alone. Bryant retired from the NBA in 2016. Bryant was married to Vanessa Bryant with whom he had four children: Bianka, Gianna, Natalia, and Capri, their youngest child, who was born in June. Read more: KOBE BRYANT: How the Black Mamba makes and spends his millions Kobe Bryant says there are WNBA stars who 'could most certainly keep up' in the NBA The 25 highest-paid NBA players of all time Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: The bizarre history of the Yule Log Christmas special