On April 18, Vanessa Bryant and her husband, the late Kobe Bryant, would have been married for 20 years. The widow marked the day by posting a wedding photo and a video where the late basketball icon referred to his wife as his “best friend.”
“We have a good time together,” he said in the clip. “I love her tremendously. We’re best friends too. It’s a blessing.”
“I love you for now, forever and for always @kobebryant ” wrote the former model on the video which highlighted snippets of the couple while he was playing for the Los Angeles Lakers.
The love story between the Lakers legend and the former model began on the set of his music video in 1999, when Kobe was 20 and Vanessa was 17. The basketball star proposed to Vanessa after she turned 18, and the pair tied the knot on April 18, 2001.
They share four children together: Natalia, who is celebrating college acceptances and a new modeling contract, Bianka (4), Capri (20 months), and Gianna, who died with her father in a plane crash that killed all 9 people aboard. Since her husband and daughter’s death, Bryant has become more vocal on social media platforms. Most recently, Bryant sued the Los Angeles Sheriffs Department to attain the names of the sheriffs who took pictures of the plane crash and then shared them outside of the investigation.
She has also posted about grief and loss, speaking directly to those who have lost loved ones during the global COVID-19 pandemic.
“Find your reason to live,” she advised in a chat with PEOPLE. “I know it’s hard. I look at my daughters and I try to push through that feeling for them. Death is guaranteed but living the rest of the day isn’t. Find your reason.”