Daily Mail: The former Los Angeles Lakers basketball star, 41, and 13-year-old Gianna died, along with seven others, after his private helicopter crashed into a hillside in Calabasas on Sunday morning.
Among those also killed was John Altobelli, a baseball coach at Orange County College, his wife Keri, their daughter Alyssa and girls basketball coach Christina Mauser.
The party of nine were said to have been heading to Mamba Academy – which Bryant founded – for the second day at the youth tournament, which is aimed at teams from the third to eighth grades.
Bryant coached daughter Gianna’s basketball team. All the games were canceled after the news of their deaths became public.
In the images taken one day before the 18-time NBA All-Star talks to Gianna and a group of her peers about their game.
Final images of Kobe Bryant-daughter ‘Gianna’-coaches just a day before their tragic deaths
Bryant had been spending more time with his daughters since leaving the league. The Bryants’ first daughter, Natalia, turned 17 a week ago. Bianka Bella Bryant is 3 years old, and Capri Kobe Bryant was born last June.
Gianna, better known as Gigi, had a promising youth career and a competitive pugnaciousness that reminded everybody of her dad.
Bryant told Jimmy Kimmel in 2018 that Gianna wanted to play in the WNBA and recalled how fans would often approach him saying ‘you gotta have a boy, you gotta someone to carry on the tradition, the legacy.’
Gianna took exception: ‘She’s like, ‘Oy, I got this,’ Bryant recalled.
John Altobelli, the head baseball coach at Orange Coast College, and his wife Keri died in the helicopter crash along with the other seven, including their daughter Alyssa.
A friend of Ara Zobayan, the pilot says Ara was not your typical egotistical helicopter pilot like most of us honestly are. Ara was a man that always remained cool, calm and collected. Jared Yochim, a friend of the pilot, penned a heartfelt tribute on Facebook, writing: ‘The pilot flying Kobe and crew today was my friend Ara Zobayan (white shirt and tie). Many of my friends were actually friends with Ara and not just pilots.
Christina Mauser, who also worked at the Mamba Academy, was a girls basketball coach at the private elementary Harbor Day School in Newport Beach. Gianna Bryant was a pupil at the school.
For mother and daughter Sarah and Payton Chester, Todd Schmidt, the school principal at Harbor View Elementary, paid a moving tribute.
Schmidt wrote: ‘As folks mourn the loss of Kobe Bryant, I want to take a moment to remember two gorgeous human beings who were with him, Sarah and Payton Chester…