“I will continue to diligently pray for your Queens,” Beyonce wrote, alongside an Instagram photo of Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna Bryant. “You are deeply missed beloved Kobe.” The message was posted three days after Kobe and Gianna’s lives were cut short in a helicopter crash on Jan. 26. The ‘Queens’ who Bey is referring to are Kobe’s wife, Vanessa Bryant, and the couple’s three surviving daughters, Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri, 7 mos. Like virtually all of Hollywood, Beyonce is absolutely reeling over the news that this family has lost its patriarch and a beloved teenage girl.
Kobe and Gianna were killed alongside seven others during the tragic helicopter crash. The copter was traveling to Gianna’s basketball game at Kobe’s Mamba Academy when it went down. The other passengers included the pilot, Ara Zaboyan, a coach, Christina Mauser, two other teenage teammates, Alyssa Altobelli and Payton Chester, and the teammates’ parents, John Altobelli, Keri Altobelli and Sarah Chester. Weather conditions — it was extremely foggy on the day of the accident — are expected to have been a factor in the crash.
Celebrity tributes to Kobe have been pouring in for days following his death. On Jan. 29, Vanessa also took to Instagram to break her silence on the loss of her husband and daughter. “Thank you for all the prayers. We definitely need them,” she wrote. “We are completely devastated by the sudden loss of my adoring husband, Kobe — the amazing father to our children; and my beautiful sweet Gianna — a loving, thoughtful, and wonderful daughter, and amazing sister to Natalia, Bianka and Capri.”
Vanessa also helped set up the MambaOnThree Fund to help raise money for the other families who were affected by this tragic crash. Fans can donate at MambaSportsFoundation.org. “Thank you for sharing your joy, your grief and your support with us,” Vanessa conclude.d. “We ask that you grant us the respect and privacy we will need to navigate this new reality. Thank you so much for lifting us up in your prayers, and for loving kbe, Gigi, Natalia, Bianka, Capri and me.”