Vanessa Bryant, 37, is remembering her late husband Kobe Bryant and their 13-year-old daughter, Gianna “Gigi” Bryant, with a special song. At Kobe and Gigi’s Celebration Of Life memorial on Feb. 24, Beyoncé revealed that her ballad, “XO,” was one of Kobe’s “favorite songs” — and so three days later, Vanessa used this same track as the background music for a new tribute post on Instagram. Kobe’s wife of nearly 19 years layered Bey’s heavenly vocals over a clip from the 2015 documentary, Kobe Bryant’s Muse, which showed Vanessa, Kobe and Gigi sharing a sweet family moment as they laughed together, played cards, danced and cuddled during Christmas time.
“Missing you both so much #GigiBryant and @kobebryant,” Vanessa captioned the sentimental footage. She also gave a shout-out to Kobe’s documentary and shared the lyrics to “XO,” which features touching lines like “Your love is bright as ever.”
Vanessa and Kobe shared a special love story, one that began when they met in 1999. They didn’t wait long to tie the knot in 2000, and Vanessa made a big reveal during her bittersweet eulogy at the memorial: “Kobe wanted us to renew our vows.” Vanessa went on to reflect on their special romance, continuing, “I was his first love, his wife, his best friend, his confidant and his protector.” She called the five-time NBA champion the “most amazing husband” and a real “girl dad,” who taught their four daughters Gigi, Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri, 8 mos., “how to be brave.”
Gigi lost her soulmate and second eldest daughter after the duo passed away in a fatal helicopter crash in Calabasas, CA on Jan. 26. Kobe and Gigi had been traveling with Gigi’s teammates and their family members to a youth basketball tournament at the Mamba Academy in Thousand Oaks, CA; assistant basketball coach Christina Mauser and pilot Ara Zobayan were also on-board. All nine people in the helicopter tragically lost their lives that day, but are continuing to be remembered in thoughtful tributes like the one above.