Vanessa Bryant shares heartbreaking tribute to daughter Gianna following sweet message to Kobe


Vanessa Bryant has shared heartbreaking tribute to her daughter Gianna, 13, who was killed alongside her dad Kobe Bryant last month when the helicopter they were travelling in crashed in California.

In a post on Instagram, Vanessa – who earlier shared a message to ‘best friend’ Kobe on Wednesday – broke hearts as she said she missed her daughter, alongside an image of what appeared to be a memorial for the up and coming basketballer.

An image of the smiling teen was seen with balloons, a number 2 – being her jersey number – in flowers and a display reading ‘Gianna’ on a table standing on an empty basketball court.

‘My Gianna. God I miss you,’ Vanessa’s tribute began. ‘I’ve been so lucky to have woken up to see your gorgeous face and amazing smile for 13 years. Wish it would’ve been until my last breath.’

She continued: ‘Mommy loves you to the moon and back. Infinity plus 1. #2 #Mambacita #GigiBryant ❤️’

Since changing her previously-private Instagram to share a tribute to her husband and daughter, while thanking fans for their support, Vanessa earlier shared another message to Kobe.


Alongside an image of the LA Lakers legend smiling at the camera, she wrote a series of hashtags and said she missed Kobe. She wrote: ‘#mybestfriend #theBestdaddy Miss you so much. ‘

Vanessa – who was married to Kobe for nearly 20 years – added the tags #handsome #sweet #funny #silly #lovinghusband and wrote: ‘❤️Miss you saying, “Bonjourno principessa/reina”.’

Kobe and Gianna were among the nine people on board a helicopter when it crashed in Calabasas on 26 January. The chopper was also carrying Gianna’s team-mates, Alyssa Altobelli and Payton Chester, Alyssa’s parents, John and Keri Altobelli, Payton’s mother Sarah Chester and their basketball coach Christina Mauser, as well as pilot Ara Zobayan.

Zobayan told air traffic controllers he was climbing to avoid a layer of cloud shortly before the crash, according to the National Transport Safety Bureau (NTSB).

Vanessa and Kobe were married for nearly 20 years (Picture: Getty Images)

Tributes flooded in from around the world, with Beyonce, David Beckham, Rihanna and Cristiano Ronaldo among those sharing their support to the victims.

Vanessa broke her silence on Instagram days after the crash, posting a family photo of herself, her husband and their four children – Gigi, Natalie, Bianka and Capri.

‘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,’ she began. ‘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.

Kobe pictured with his wife Vanessa and children (Picture: Vanessa Bryant / Instagram)

‘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.’

Looking to the future, she continued: ‘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.

‘I just wish I could hug them, kiss them and bless them. Have them here with us, forever.’

She concluded the message by adding: ‘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.’

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