In an 2018 interview with Alex Rodriguez, Kobe Bryant revealed that he started taking helicopters in order to spend less time in traffic and more time with his family. He said, "Traffic started getting really, really bad/ I was sitting in traffic and I wound up missing like a school play because I was sitting in traffic. This thing just kept mounting, and I had to figure out a way that I could still train and focus on the craft but still not compromise family time. so, that's when I looked into helicopter . . . You have road trips and times where you're not seeing your kids. So, every chance I get to see them and spend with them. Even if it's 20 minutes in the car, I want that."
Although Kobe flew frequently, reports say that he and his wife Vanessa made a point to not fly on a helicopter together. A source told People,"He and Vanessa had a deal that they would never fly on a helicopter together." The same source also revealed that Bryant "only" flew in helicopters with pilot Ara Zobayan, who was also killed in the crash.
Kobe, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, Calif. on Sunday. (January 26th).
LEBRON JAMES BREAKS HIS SILENCE
Yesterday (January 27th) LeBron James broke his silence on Kobe's death. He wrote on Instagram, "I'm Not Ready but here I go. Man I sitting here trying to write something for this post but every time I try I begin crying again just thinking about you, niece Gigi and the friendship/bond/brotherhood we had! I literally just heard your voice Sunday morning before I left Philly to head back to LA. Didn't think for one bit in a million years that would be the last conversation we'd have. WTF!! I'm heartbroken and devastated my brother!! 😢😢😢😢💔. Man I love you big bro."
He continued, "My heart goes to Vanessa and the kids. I promise you I'll continue your legacy man! You mean so much to us all here especially #LakerNation💜💛 and it's my responsibility to put this sh*t on my back and keep it going!! Please give me the strength from the heavens above and watch over me! I got US here! There's so much more I want to say but just can't right now because I can't get through it! Until we meet again my brother!! #Mamba4Life❤️🙏🏾 #Gigi4Life❤️🙏🏾."
TRACY MCGRADY SAYS KOBE WANTED TO DIE YOUNG
Meanwhile, NBA Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady, one of Kobe's closest friends, revealed that before he had a family, he told him that he wanted to die young. In an interview with ESPN, he said, "I'm devastated, just like everybody else. This sounds crazy," McGrady said. "But Kobe spoke this. ... He used to say all the time, 'I want to die young.' ... 'I want to be immortalized. I want to have my career be better than Michael Jordan's and I wanna die young.' And I just thought that he was just so crazy for saying that."
MORE CELEBRITY REACTIONS
Ice Cube: "Kobe is some of the glue that holds L.A. together. I just toss and turn all night thinking about Vanessa and his daughters, thinking about his mother, and his father, his sisters, thinking about Vanessa's parents, just everybody in his immediate life that loved him, what they lost. I know what we lost as fans. Me personally, I don't have too many heroes that's younger than me, and that was one of 'em." (:
Carmelo Anthony: "This probably was the hardest game I ever had to play. Just uh … I don't know. It was tough. It was tough. ... Honestly knowing him, the way that I know him, he would've wanted me to play. Our friendship and relationship was deeper than basketball. It was family. It was friendship. Basketball was the last piece of connective tissue between us two."AUDIO: CARMELO ANTHONY ON KOBE'S DEATH
AUDIO: ICE CUBE ON KOBE BRYANT'S DEATH
AUDIO: KOBE BRYANT REVEALS WHY HE STARTED TAKING HELICOPTERS
AUDIO: TRACY MCGRADY SAYS KOBE BRYANT WANTED TO DIE YOUNG.