Vanessa Bryant spoke out for the first time following the sudden, tragic passing of her husband, Kobe Bryant, and their 13-year-old daughter Gianna in a helicopter crash on Sunday, January 26.
On Wednesday, January 29, Vanessa shared an emotional message on Instagram, alongside a photo of her family, about how “devastated” she was over the passing of her husband and their daughter Gianna.
“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,” she began.
“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,” she continued.
“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,” she added. “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.”
Vanessa emphasized that even though she’s not sure how to recover from this tragic event, she and her family will continue to “keep pushing.”
“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,” she wrote.
“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.” Vanessa continued. “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.”
In the same post, Vanessa announced that the Mamba Sports Foundation set up a charity for the seven other victims involved in the helicopter crash: John Altobelli, Keri Altobelli, Alyssa Altobelli, Sarah Chester, Payton Chester, Christina Mauser and pilot Ara Zobayan.
“To honor our Team Mamba family, the Mamba Sports Foundation has set up the MambaOnThree Fund to help support the other families affected by this tragedy,” she wrote. “To donate, please go to MambaOnThree.org. To further Kobe and Gianna’s legacy in youth sports, please visit MambaSportsFoundation.org.”
“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 ❤️,” concluded her post.
Vanessa and Bryant tied the knot in April 2001, and during their almost 19-year marriage, the couple welcomed four daughters: Gianna, Natalia, Bianka, and Capri.