On Sunday, 41-year-old Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Maria-Onore Bryant died in a tragic helicopter crash that reportedly killed a total of nine people. The identity of all aboard are still undisclosed at this time, pending further investigation and conversation with next of kin, according to an LA County Sheriff at a press briefing earlier today.
Bryant is survived by his wife Vanessa Bryant, and three other daughters – Natalia Diamante, Bianka Bella and Capri Kobe, who is only 7 months old.
Kobe will go down in history as one of the best basketball players of all time. He won five championships throughout his notable 20-year career (all with the Lakers), was a 17-time NBA All-Star, two-time NBA Finals MVP, won two Olympic gold medals, won an Oscar in 2018 for his documentary “Dear Basketball,” and more. In addition, he was fluent in three languages – including Spanish, which he famously learned largely from telenovelas.
Of course, his legacy is not void of blemishes. In 2003, Bryant was accused of rape in a case that was settled out of court, according to Daily News.
Many will take time to reflect and process his complicated legacy in upcoming days, but the most-common reaction today was shock. People of all backgrounds were stricken by shock and grief today, and many took to social media to express their raw thoughts.
“[This] is why I don’t wait for tomorrow,” J Balvin wrote. “So many surprises in life that the present escapes us.” Dozens of others weighed in as well. Below are a few reactions from Latine folks who either knew him personally or admired him from afar: