Los Angeles Lakers Legend Kobe Bryant And Daughter Die In Helicopter Crash

Saba Hamedy

NBA legend Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, on Sunday. The former Los Angeles Laker, nicknamed “Black Mamba,” was 41.

His 13-year-old daughter Gianna was among the helicopter’s eight other passengers, who were all confirmed dead. 

John Altobelli, Orange Coast College’s head baseball coach, was among the victims, the college said in a statement. In an interview with CNN, John Altobelli’s brother Tony said Altobelli’s wife, Keri, and one of their two daughters, Alyssa, were also aboard. 

In a news conference on Sunday afternoon, Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department authorities refused to name the victims in the crash until the county coroner identifies them and officials notify next of kin. 

The Federal Aviation Administration confirmed a S-76 helicopter crashed “under unknown circumstances.” The FAA said it will investigate the crash, as will the National Transportation Safety Board.

NTSB member Jennifer Homendy said at a news conference that a team of 18 people are going to the scene of the crash. Homendy said NTSB will investigate the history of the pilot and whatever crew was on board, maintenance records of the helicopter and information on the helicopter’s owner.

Bryant, who was married to wife Vanessa for more than 18 years, was also father to Natalia, Bianca and Capri. 

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement that the “NBA family is devastated by the tragic passing” of Bryant and his daughter. 

“For 20 seasons, Kobe showed us what is possible when remarkable talent blends with an absolute devotion to winning,” Silver said in a statement. “He was one of the most extraordinary players in the history of our game ... But he will be remembered most for inspiring people around the world to pick up a basketball and compete to the very best of their ability. He was generous with the wisdom he acquired and saw it as his mission to share it with future generations of players, taking special delight in...

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