Millions have publicly grieved the loss of NBA star Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, who died in a tragic helicopter crash near Calabasas on Sunday. After five days, Vanessa Bryant, the NBA star's wife and Gianna's mother, has made a statement about her family's loss. The Bryants have three other daughters, Natalia (17), Bianka (three) and Capri (seven months).
"Thank you for all the prayers," Bryant wrote. "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.
"There aren't enough words to describe our pain right now," she continued, saying however that she "take[s] comfort in knowing that Kobe and Gigi both knew that they were so deeply loved."
"We are also devastated for the families who lost their loved ones on Sunday, and we share in their grief intimately," Bryant added, addressing the seven other victims, most of whom were members or staff of the Mama Sports Academy where the helicopter was headed for a tournament."
She concluded: "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."
Bryant, a model and dancer, married the basketball player when she was 18. For those wishing to honor her family, she suggested donations to the Mamba Sports Foundation, which Kobe Bryant founded in 2018 to provide opportunities in sports to underserved communities in Southern California.