Every generation has those devastating, heartbreaking events that they will always remember where they were when they found out. Who told them, how they found out, where they were, what they were doing. January 26, 2020- It was an unusually warm day here in New Jersey in January. I was out walking my dog, coincidentally named Kobe, when my phone was lighting up with the most devastating news. Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and seven others tragically died in a helicopter crash. I stood in shock and felt so much pain. I remember going home and just sat in silence while the news reported it all. I watched as the fans gathered at the Staples Center, the memorabilia and flowers piling up outside. The video montages of Kobe’s life and legacy. The creative and beautiful murals that were painted all across the world dedicated to Bryant. It’s now been a year since that unthinkable day. Today we reflect on the legendary basketball star, the #GirlDad, the entrepreneur, the Academy Award winner, and the coach. Kobe’s basketball career spanned two decades, five championships, eighteen All-Stars, two Finals MVPs, two Olympic gold medalist, and one NBA MVP. However all of those accolades just scratches the surface of what he achieved in his 41 years. Kobe Bryant was so much more than his legendary 20-year basketball career. Kobe seemed to be at ease with his post retirement life. Retirement meant more time with his wife, Vanessa, and his four daughters. The greatest #GirlDad if there ever was one. He was just finding his footing in the film industry and as an entrepreneur. He loved coaching his basketball loving daughter Gianna and all the kids at the Mamba Sports Academy. Just as his post retirement life started it was taken away ever so quickly. Kobe poured himself into everything he did with such passion. He inspired so many of us, yet he made us all feel like we knew him. He will forever be remembered for what he did on and off the court. “The most important thing is to try and inspire people so that they can be great at whatever they want to do.”

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