Three days after losing her husband and 13-year-old daughter in a helicopter crash, Vanessa Bryant has made her first public statement about the deaths of Kobe and Gianna.
Bryant posted a statement through Instagram on Wednesday, accompanied by a portrait of her entire family.
In the post, Bryant thanked the millions of people who have shown their support, love and prayers toward the family in the wake of their unthinkable tragedy
“There aren’t enough words to describe our pain right now,” Bryant said. “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.”
The statement ended by announcing the creation of the MambaOnThree Fund to support the other families lost to the tragedy.
In addition to the Bryants, Gianna’s 13-year-old teammates Alyssa Altobelli and Payton Chester and their parents Keri Altobelli, John Altobelli and Sarah Chester as well as assistant coach Christina Mauser and pilot Ara Zobayan died in the crash.
Donations can be made at MambaOnThree.org.
Bryant also made a subtle change to her Instagram account, changing her profile picture to a photo of Kobe and Gianna from the 2016 NBA All-Star Game.
Vanessa and Kobe first met in 1999, and married in 2001. They had four daughters together: Natalia, Gianna, Bianka and Capri.
The Lakers also somewhat broke their silence since Bryant’s death on Wednesday, having only tweeted a short statement on Monday to announce the postponement of their game against the Clippers. The team’s first tweet: a picture of Kobe and Gianna.
The team also echoed Vanessa Bryant’s statement, sharing links to the MambaOnThree fund and the Bryants’ youth sports foundation.
The Mamba Sports Foundation has set up the MambaOnThree Fund to support the families affected by this tragedy. To help, please visit https://t.co/e4Je5ORGC2. For those who are inspired to continue Kobe and Gianna’s legacy in youth sports, please visit https://t.co/KsaefpUNGf
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) January 30, 2020
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