Kobe Bryant was not only an iconic basketball player but in the almost four years since his retirement, he showed his plans were to be even more successful after basketball.
In those years, Bryant became an Oscar winner and a teller of wonderful stories. However, what he’ll likely be most remembered for is his work as a husband and father.
That post-basketball success was tragically cut short on Jan. 26 when Bryant, daughter Gianna Bryant, and seven others were killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas. The loss of Bryant sent the basketball world — and seemingly the rest of the world too — into a deep mourning period. Tributes have popped up from all walks of life and the L.A. Live plaza outside of Staples Center has been flooded with people since the news broke.
Now, the city of Los Angeles is planning a memorial service to celebrate Bryant’s impact on the city. They will take all their cues from Vanessa Bryant and they will make sure to honor all nine lives lost, according to Dakota Smith of Los Angeles Times:
“There will absolutely be a memorial to mark the contributions of this incredible man and not only him, but to commemorate the loss of his daughter and all the other families that were there,” Garcetti said Thursday. “We don’t have that date finalized but we’ve been talking every day to the Lakers, and most importantly, to [Bryant’s widow, Vanessa] as well. I think one message that I would say is this is not just about a man who was a basketball player, this is about a father, this is about a leader, this is about a filmmaker, this is about an artist, this is about somebody who was so much more than just how he was on the court.”
Mayor Eric Garcetti wants this memorial to show the unity of the city and will make sure it’s planned in such a way where as many people can come to it as possible:
“It’s a reminder how much unity we have, though. We are one city that believes in each other, believes in something bigger than ourselves and we will absolutely do everything to make sure that this is done so that everybody can come to it as well,” the mayor said.
There might never be a memorial service grand enough to honor Bryant and his impact on the city of Los Angeles. However, it seems the city — with the help of the Bryant family — will do everything in their power to make sure of it.
When famous figures like Michael Jackson and Nipsey Hussle passed away, the Staples Center was used as the venue for their memorials. However, due to Bryant’s wide-reaching legacy, they may not be able to use the Staples Center at all.
Whatever the city ends up doing, it likely will be one of the most well-attended events in Los Angeles history.