In the wake of Kobe and Gianna’s death, their father- daughter bond was special to watch
By: Ubong Ekpo
Kobe Bryant’s death is still a tough pill to swallow. The most tragic part of the helicopter crash that killed Kobe is the fact that his daughter, Gianna Bryant, was only the tender age of 13, when she died as well along with her father.
The world thought she was ready to take on her father’s basketball legacy.
Despite the tragedy, one of the more positive aspects being celebrated in the wake of Kobe Bryant’s death, is the special bond the two of them shared.
It had often been mentioned as a classic tale of irony that all of Bryant’s children were girls. With many citing Bryant ‘needed’ a male heir apparent to continue on his basketball legacy, both Kobe and Gianna knew this was not necessary.
In an interview with Jimmy Kimmel in 2018, Bryant responded to such remarks, recalling a time a fan told him that a male child was needed. Bryant recalled the incident:
“The best thing that happens is when we go out, and fans will come up to me, and she’ll be standing next to me, and they will be like, ‘You gotta have a boy, you and I gotta have a boy, man, to have somebody carry on the tradition, the legacy.’ And Gigi is like, ‘I got this!'” Bryant said.
The love Kobe and Gianna shared for the game of basketball was pure and just as valid as any father-son bonding over sports would be.
It was the famous ‘Mamba Mentality’ mantra that drove Kobe as a player, and this attitude carried on as he taught Gianna.
Kobe’s love for his Gianna and their growing bonding over basketball is what led to Bryant opening the Mamba Academy. It was this same Academy that Bryant was on his way to that fateful day of the helicopter crash.
Kobe was without a doubt one of the greatest players of all time. His hard work ethic translated into every aspect of his life, going as far as to win an Academy Award.
He managed to inspire Gianna to follow in his footsteps; her dream was to play for UConn women’s basketball and eventually dominate the WNBA.
Kobe will be remembered for defying gender norms and raising his daughters with the same strength as one would give their sons.
As the world continues to mourn the loss of Kobe, Gianna and the seven other victims, Kobe as a father should be a lasting memory. ‘Girl dad’ became a trending topic after Bryant’s death, inspiring men globally to proclaim how proud they were to be the fathers of their daughters.
Kobe and Gianna’s bond will not be forgotten, as we continue to mourn the unfathomable loss.