The latest detail concerning the death of Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant came on Friday with news that Bryant, his daughter, Gianna, and the other seven passengers on the doomed helicopter were killed instantly in the crash.
The medical examiner's report on Kobe Bryant's death was released today, concluding that he, Gianna and the helicopter passengers died instantly after the crash.
— Tim Reynolds (@ByTimReynolds) May 16, 2020
The elder Bryant’s death on Jan. 26 sent shock waves across the world, and obviously, within the basketball world, where the elder Bryant had played 20 seasons with the Lakers.
The news became even more painful when it was learned that the younger Bryant and seven others were on board the flight that crashed in foggy weather en route to a basketball tournament.
The elder Bryant and his daughter were buried in private services, with the Lakers holding a memorial service on Feb. 24 at Staples Center. Attending the sad event were many current and former players, including Hall of Famers such as Michael Jordan and Bill Russell.
In some sense, the fact that all of the individuals on helicopter died instantly offers the rationalization that they didn’t suffer in the aftermath of the accident.
Still, the gaping hole left by the elder Bryant’s death will continue to resonate for years to come. The elder Bryant’s scheduled posthumous induction into the basketball Hall of Fame on Aug. 29 will undoubtedly be a bittersweet affair, given his absence.
The younger Bryant and the other two girls killed in the accident, Alyssa Altobelli and Payton Chester, were recognized in last month’s WNBA draft, when the trio was named in honorary selections by the league.