THE WIFE of Kobe Bryant has spoken for the first time since the death of husband and daughter in a helicopter crash over the weekend.
LA Lakers hero Bryant and 13-year-old Gianna were among nine people who died when the aircraft they were travelling in came down amid thick cloud over the city of Calabasas in California on Sunday.
Vanessa Bryant, who took to social media to share her feelings, has said that she is”completely devastated” by the death of the NBA legend and teenage daughter.
Mrs Bryant said she and the couple’s other daughters, Natalia, 17, Bianka, three, and Capri, seven months, were thankful for the “millions of people who’ve shown support and love during this horrific time”.
She said: “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. 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.
“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.”