Kobe Bryant dies in helicopter crash with 8 people including 13-year-old daughter

Bryant is remembered as being one of the sports all-time greats. Another eight people were killed in the crash, including the champion's 13-year-old daughter Gianna.

 Kobe Bryant is pictured with his daughter Gianna at the WNBA All Star Game at Mandalay Bay Events Center. (photo credit: REUTERS)
Kobe Bryant is pictured with his daughter Gianna at the WNBA All Star Game at Mandalay Bay Events Center.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
NBA legend Kobe Bryant has been reported dead in a helicopter crash in California, along with eight others on board.
He was only 41 years old. Bryant's 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, was also on the helicopter that crashed near Los Angeles, killing all nine on board, several major US media outlets reported.
Also on board were Gianna's friend Alyssa and her parents, Orange Coast College (OCC) baseball coach John Altobelli and his wife Keri; Christina Mauser, an assistant basketball coach at a private elementary school; and mother and daughter Sarah and Payton Chester, CNN reported.
The last victim, the pilot, remains unidentified at the time of writing.
Bryant was famous for his incredible basketball career, where he consistently ranked as one of the all-time greats, having been an 18-time NBA all-star and the winner of five NBA championship rings, as well as accumulating numerous accomplishments over his 20-year career, all of which was spent playing with the Los Angeles Lakers.
He retired in 2016 after an acclaimed career.
On January 26, Bryant was in his private helicopter when it went down in Calabasas, California, with at least three others. There were no survivors, TMZ confirmed.
It was later reported that the passengers traveling with him were his four daughters.
On Twitter, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said that five people died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas and that there were no survivors, but did not disclose any further details.

However, Bryant's tragic death was confirmed by the City of Calabasas in a statement posted by their official Twitter account.
"It is with great sadness that we learn of the death of Kobe Bryant and four others in a helicopter crash in Calabasas," the statement said.

The sheriff's department explained that first responders came to put out the flames at the scene, posting a picture of a fire truck and smoke emerging from the brush in a ravine.
Bryant was known to use a helicopter for travel since his tenure with the Lakers, when he was known to travel to games in a Sikorsky S-76 chopper, TMZ reported.
Thousands took to social media to pay their respects and mourn the passing of one of the greatest basketball players of all time, including US President Donald Trump.
"Kobe Bryant, despite being one of the truly great basketball players of all time, was just getting started in life. He loved his family so much, and had such strong passion for the future. The loss of his beautiful daughter, Gianna, makes this moment even more devastating...." he tweeted.
Taking to Twitter on board his flight to Washington to meet with Trump, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed his condolences.
"I was sorry to hear about the tragedy in the US," he said, adding that it was "a sad day for all sports lovers in the world."

Likud MK Miki Zohar also expressed his shock, calling the news "difficult to digest."
"He was a true basketball legend," he said of Bryant. "I watched hundreds of his games and saw him break records and drive the basketball world I love so much.
"It’s a very sad day for sports in general and basketball in particular."


He is survived by his wife, Vanessa.