Kobe Bryant's wife Vanessa has released a statement on the tragic deaths of the NBA icon and their 13-year-old daughter Gianna. She posted a family picture and wrote on Instagram, "My girls and I want to thank the millions of people who've shown support and love during this horrific time. Thank you for all the prayers. 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. We are also devastated for the families who lost their loved ones on Sunday, and we share in their grief intimately."
She continued, "There aren't enough words to describe our pain right now. 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."
She added, "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. Our love for them is endless — and that's to say, immeasurable. I just wish I could hug them, kiss them and bless them. Have them here with us, forever. Thank you for sharing your joy, your grief and your support with us. We ask that you grant us the respect and privacy we will need to navigate this new reality."
Vanessa added that the Mamba Sports Foundation has set up the MambaOnThree Fun to help support the other families affected by the tragedy.
She ended her post with, "Thank you so much for lifting us up in your prayers, and for loving Kobe, Gigi, Natalia, Bianka, Capri and me. #Mamba #Mambacita #GirlsDad #DaddysGirls #Family ❤️."
Close friend Lala Anthony responded, "Love you deep V. Forever and always by ur side ❤️❤️❤️🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽." The Real co-host Tamera Mowry tweeted, "Sending you love and prayers ❤️🙏🏽." Ayesha Curry tweeted, "We love you. 🙏🏽."
KOBE BRYANT TO BE HONORED AT THE 2020 SUPER BOWL
In other Kobe news, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell revealed that Kobe will be honored at this Sunday's Super Bowl. He said, "I don't think just Los Angeles is mourning the loss of Kobe Bryant. I did have the opportunity to meet him. He obviously brought a lot to our world and I think all of us not only feel for the tragic events to his family but as well as everyone else who was a passenger on that helicopter." He added, "It's hard to understand and it's hard to process."
Meanwhile, Shaquille O' Neal has decied not to cancel his Shaq's Funhouse Super Bowl party this weekend in Miami and will donate the proceeds to the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Foundation.
PETITION FOR FOX TO CUT TIES WITH TMZ FOR LEAKING KOBE BRYANT DEATH
There is a growing Change.org petition that is asking for Fox to cut ties with TMZ over its coverage of Kobe Bryant's death. It is said that TMZ reported the news of Kobe's death before his family found out, but Harvey Levin, the head of the site, said that he got permission from Kobe's team to release the news.
As of press time, the petition had over 440,000 signatures.
DISNEY HEIRESS DRAGGED FOR CALLING KOBE BRYANT A RAPIST
Abigail Disney is getting dragged on social media for her comments on Kobe Bryant after his death. Yesterday (January 29th), Disney tweeted, "I haven't said anything about Kobe so far because I felt some time needed to pass before weighing in. But yes, it's time for the sledgehammer to come out. The man was a rapist. Deal with it." Disney was faced with immediate backlash. One person wrote, "This is unfair and not ok. Feel how you will about him but his wife lost her husband, his daughters lost their father. If you must go down this road, educate yourself fully on that situation first, you just may feel a bit differently."
Another person tweeted, "Damn some people have no respect for the dead. Kobe literally lost his life along with his daughter a few days ago. Its national news when a ‘black' athlete makes a mistake but when Brock Turner raped an unconscious woman behind a dumpster and get a 6 month sentence and served 3."