Vanessa Bryant, the wife of Kobe Bryant, has broken her silence in an emotional message about dealing with the death of her husband and 13-year-old daughter Gianna.
On Wednesday night, Vanessa took to Instagram to thank the “millions of people who’ve shown support and love during this horrific time.”
“We are completely devastated by the sudden loss of my adoring husband, Kobe — the amazing father of our children; and my beautiful, sweet Gianna — a loving, thoughtful, and wonderful daughter, and amazing sister to Natalia, Bianka, and Capri,” Vanessa wrote.
She also sent her condolences to the seven other victims who lost their lives in the helicopter crash Sunday in Calabasas, California.
"We share in their grief intimately. There aren't enough words to describe our pain right now,” the mom wrote.
Kobe, 41, and Gianna were headed to Mamba Sports Academy, which Kobe co-founded, for a youth sports event when their helicopter crashed into a mountainside. The conditions were foggy that morning, and before the crash, air traffic control informed the helicopter’s pilot that he was flying too low to monitor them.
Vanessa and Kobe had been married since 2001 and had four children together.
"I'm not sure what our lives hold beyond today, and it's impossible to imagine life without them," Vanessa also wrote. "But we wake up each day, trying to keep pushing because Kobe, and our baby girl, Gigi, are shining on us to light the way."
Vanessa's Instagram account had previously been private, but she switched it to public on Wednesday before posting the message. The post went alongside a smiling family photo. She also changed her main photo to a photo of Gianna and Kobe in a loving embrace.
Gianna’s basketball coach, Christina Mauser, and two of her teammates, Alyssa Altobelli and Payton Chester, were also aboard the helicopter, along with Sara Chester, John Altobelli, a head baseball coach at Orange Coast College and his wife, Keri, and helicopter pilot Ara Zobayan.
Vanessa added that their family set up a "MambaOnThree" fund to help the families of the other crash victims.