There has been an outpouring of grief following the deaths of basketball legend Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, the pilot and several other people in a helicopter crash in California, United States, on Sunday.
Messages of condolence have come from celebrities and fellow sports stars, expressing shock and disbelief at his sudden death.
Bryant, a five-time NBA champion, was widely considered to be one of the greatest players in the game’s history.
Among the messages were a number that expressed heartbreak at 13-year-old Gianna’s life being cut so short.
Through his Twitter account, President Donald Trump sent his condolences to the bereaved family, saying Kobe had a strong passion for the future. He also said that the loss of his young daughter made the moment even more devastating.
“Kobe Bryant, despite being one of the truly great basketball players of all time, was just getting started in life. He loved his family so much, and had such a strong passion for the future. The loss of his beautiful daughter, Gianna, makes this moment even more devastating,
“Melania and I send our warmest condolences to Vanessa and the wonderful Bryant family. May God be with you all!, ” he tweeted.
Former President Barack Obama said in a tweet that Kobe was a legend and he was just getting started in what would have been a meaningful second act. Obama also said that the loss of Gianna was more heartbreaking.
“To lose Gianna is even more heartbreaking to us, as parents. Michelle and I send love and prayers to Vanessa and the entire Bryant family on an unthinkable day, ” he wrote.
The 42nd US President and founder of the Clinton Foundation, Bill Clinton, said that he was saddened by the tragic loss of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna.
Clinton mourned Kobe, saying he brought excitement and joy to basketball fans, not just in Los Angeles, but also all over the US, and around the world.
“Hillary and I are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and all those who died in the crash,
“He was also a leader off the court, including in his advocacy for young people, especially the vulnerable and homeless — a passion I saw firsthand when I joined him and Vanessa for the opening of a housing project they and their foundation supported.
“Kobe Bryant lived a very large life in a very short time. But above all, he loved his family. Our prayers are with Vanessa, Natalia, Bianka, and Capri, and all those who lost loved ones today, ” ended the statement.
The NBA issued a statement saying it was “devastated by the tragic passing of Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna.
“For 20 seasons, Kobe showed us what is possible when remarkable talent blends with an absolute devotion to winning,” it said.