Kobe Bryant’s passing has left LA & the rest of the world reeling

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Kobe Bryant and eight other people were killed in the helicopter crash on Sunday morning. It was Kobe’s private helicopter, and it carried nine people total – the pilot, Kobe and his daughter Gigi, plus six more passengers. The cause of the crash is still being investigated (the LA Times has more here), but it’s believed that the fog in Calabasas was a factor. Some of the other passengers in the helicopter have been identified – after their families were told, obviously. Christina Mauser, a girls basketball coach at Harbor Day School, was on the helicopter. She left behind a husband and three children. Other passengers: John Altobelli, Keri Altobelli and their daughter Alyssa. Alyssa was on Gigi’s basketball team. John Altobelli was the baseball coach of Orange Coast College.

There are clearly a lot of heated, accusatory conversations about what we “can” talk about regarding Kobe Bryant. For his fans, he was a GOAT and an inspiration on and off the court. For other people, he was an accused rapist who settled out of court with his victim. While he was alive, I spent a chunk of time talking about how I felt deeply uncomfortable with the whitewashing of Kobe’s legacy as a man. But I just think that we honestly need to give everyone, particularly the families and the fans, time to grieve. Please don’t start yelling at everyone and starting arguments. I mean, children died. Vanessa Bryant lost a husband and a child. A mother of three is dead. Maybe just slow your roll for a few days before we start assessing Kobe Bryant’s complicated legacy.

Tributes poured out for Kobe and Gigi and the other crash victims. LAX lit their towers in gold and purple. Lakers superfan Jack Nicholson came out of seclusion to speak about Kobe’s passing. Some reactions about Kobe’s passing:

Vanessa Laine Bryant and Kobe Bryant at the 2019 Baby2Baby Gala Presented By Paul Mitchell held at the 3LABS in Culver City, USA on November 9, 2019.

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Photos courtesy of WENN.

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100 Responses to “Kobe Bryant’s passing has left LA & the rest of the world reeling”

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  1. Jess says:

    I’ve struggled too with Kobe in the past but right now all I can think about is his family and the others and these losses. This tragedy happened exactly a month after the helicopter crash in Hawaii that killed a mother and her thirteen year old daughter from my town, Madison, and both of these tragedies have hit me harder than I would have expected. I guess it’s the loss of a parent and a child, in such a violent way, that’s really made them hard to comprehend. This is so sad for all the families involved and I keep thinking about how devastated the loved ones must be today.

    • Esmom says:

      I think it’s also the sudden nature of the tragedy. One minute you’re on a short jaunt in Kobe’s helicopter — a trip made countless times — and literally the next minute you’re gone forever. It’s so hard to grasp and it makes me marvel at how most people manage to survive those everyday commutes and excursions.

      • Vava says:

        Yeah, very true.
        I’m not a sports fan at all, but this story of these young people dying like this (and I’m referring to everyone on that helicopter) is so sad and horrible. Meanwhile evil assholes like Trump, Pompeo, Barr, my Mother-In-Law, and others thrive. There is something wrong with the Universe.

  2. lucia says:

    His legacy will never be reassessed. He’ll go down as a loving family man who was a legend on the court and his 19 year old rape victim will never be mentioned again.

    I hope Vanessa has the support she needs.

    • Eleonor says:

      Sad this.

    • Ravensdaughter says:

      Horrendous-all the people lost on this helicopter flight and all the families affected.
      Moreover, some promising women’s basketball players-the future of the WNBA-were lost. Related to this, one can only imagine what Kobe could have done to support and promote women’s basketball…
      I think helicopters are very dangerous but apparently Kobe travelled in his personal helicopter-with a pilot-all the time. What are the stats with helicopter crashes vs. planes?
      This is just so sad. The “Love is forever” pic makes me want to cry, and I wasn’t even a Kobe fan.

      • Algernon says:

        People magazine has an article up about the risks of helicopter travel versus small planes. Many large cities in America are mulling limitations on private helicopter flights, they’re not nearly as regulated as private jets.

      • kellyrae says:

        A friend of mine is married to a commercial pilot for a major Airline in Canada and he was telling me recently he would never personally never fly in a helicopter at all.

      • M says:

        I was curious about this (safety of helicopters) so I did some reading. They’re apparently less safe than commercial planes, but everything is. Commercial airlines are pretty much the safest form of travel. They’re also less dangerous than driving or riding in a car, once you filter out the risky uses of helicopters (search & rescue, military, etc).

        I wasn’t able to figure out how they compare to private planes.

      • The Other Katherine says:

        kellyrae, I know someone who used to fly helicopters in the Army. Post-military, he looked at jobs flying helicopters to and from oil rigs because the pay was great, but he opted not to do it because they cut so many corners on pre-flight checks and maintenance, and he went into software development instead. Listening to his stories made me very leery of traveling in any non-military helicopter or small private plane, truth be told. It’s a whole different world from commercial airline travel, with too much emphasis on pleasing whoever’s paying, and not enough emphasis on following safety checklists and guidelines to the letter.

    • Courtney says:

      This.

  3. Erinn says:

    This was absolutely heartbreaking. I think it’s important to not completely whitewash people in death. But I also think it’s important to give some space to heal, especially when so many people involved have nothing to do with that part of his life. SO many families are effected by this, and it’s just such a tragedy. I can’t imagine the pain that everyone involved is going through right now, and I think it’s best to focus on the victims in general first and foremost.

    I just can’t imagine the kind of grief that people are dealing with in the aftermath. I can’t imagine having to be the one to tell people that their loved ones are gone.

    • Tiffany says:

      Agree with you. And while I know his history and will never whitewash it, I will also not ignore the fact that man was a walking history book (who can say they stay and retire with one team in this day and age) who inspired (if not the entire reason) the current generation that is now playing basketball.

      He was Lakers.

      He was L.A.

      He was Staples.

      He was basketball.

      He was Legend.

  4. Veronica S. says:

    I can’t imagine how those kids (from both families) feel losing both a parent and a sibling like that. Reminds me of when Colbert talks about losing his father and siblings under similar circumstances (plane crash) when he was twelve. The impact just resonates through the rest of your life.

    • moco says:

      Yes, I immediately thought of Colbert, too, especially when he spoke with Joe Biden, who lost his wife and his daughter in a car accident, about how the tragedies have affected both of them for the rest of their lives. Just devastating for Kobe’s wife and remaining daughters…

    • olive says:

      the altobelli family lost both parents and a daughter. their surviving son is an adult, but their surviving daughter looks to be a teen.

  5. S808 says:

    A truly horrific accident. My heart aches for Vanessa. Losing your husband and your baby at the same time is a pain I wouldn’t wish on anyone. I pray for peace and healing for her and all the other families of the victims onboard.

    These situations are not completely black and white. It is possible to upset about his past behavior while recognizing his amazing career, impact and philanthropic work. However, I do think people should be afforded time to gather their emotions. It hasn’t even been 24 hours. I wish his victim peace as well. She may never get her due justice and that is extremely sad as well. It’s just sad all around.

  6. Bc says:

    No one is perfect. People make mistakes. RIP Kobe. Forever a legend to me.

    • Erika says:

      No one is perfect – but yikes. “People make mistakes” is a horrible way to wave away sexual assault, no matter the circumstances.

      • Bebe says:

        Yup. Ugh.

      • Ina says:

        Wholeheartedly agree BC and Erika. There’s more to the story of that rape and Kobe than what was disclosed to the media.

      • Redgrl says:

        Agree, Erica. How many of those currently making excuses for Kobe Bryant (he was young, we don’t know what happened, he’s changed) were outraged at people when they gave someone they don’t like – Brett Kavanagh for example- a pass for the same type of behaviour? (He was young, he’s changed, we don’t know what happened). Have to be consistent. Just because you happen to like Kobe Bryant doesn’t change what he did. i think some people don’t want to accept they will excuse a rapist just because they like him – just like all those people they purported to have contempt for for doing the same thing before this..For all of our alleged support of victims and professed belief in #metoo for some people it goes out the window when it involves someone they like – and I suspect a lot of outrage is from people who don’t want to admit that about themselves. Feel sad for his daughter and the others who died. Him – it’s complicated and I find the whole thing unsettling and upsetting on many profound levels.

      • perplexed says:

        I think people were willing to give Brett Kavanaugh the benefit of the doubt and a chance to prove his innocence , but it was his behaviour at his Hearing that set people off. He acted like a crazy person at what was ostensibly a job interview and that gave people enough room to think that it’s likely he was the same person as a teenager and guilty of what he was being accused of. He did not act sane at his hearing. Before that, I don’t think people were going to tar and feather him. Then he went ballistic, and people judged him according to how he behaved in front of the entire country. I think there is a distinction to be made there. I actually don’t think people judged him that harshly before he lost his temper.

      • (TheOG)@Jan90067 says:

        Kobe was a bb legend, yes, he loved his kids. He may’ve been trying to be a better husband/person. But his past IS his past. We, on this site, don’t give others (Polanski, Allen, Depp, Pitt etc, who ARE POS) a break because of their “talents”. I don’t think Kobe should be deified because he was a great bb player.

        And yes, I know: time and place. But I’d bet everything I own that when those men I listed above pass, we sure as hell won’t be paying tribute to any of their artistic work, all that will be said is about the behavior.

        All 9 on board who perished leave grieving families, and for them, I truly have the deepest condolences. No matter what, these people were loved and will be missed.

    • Meg says:

      Yeesh. Gross

    • Ginger says:

      Gross, Bc.

  7. minx says:

    The pictures I’m seeing of him with his arm around Gianna, so proud of her…heartbreaking.

  8. Lightpurple says:

    My thoughts are with the families and the NBA tributes have been touching and lovely.

  9. MellyMel says:

    Yeah I don’t have an issue with people talking about someone’s entire legacy when they pass. You should acknowledge the good and the bad of someone’s life. However, I think there should be a respectful window of time when we just let people react & grieve. Especially in this case where children also passed. Seeing comments on twitter a mere five minutes after his death was being reported and there was still unconfirmed information being spread, is not the time to bring up that part of his life. I’m still in a state of shock and I’m not even a basketball fan, but this man was a cultural and sports icon. I can only imagine how his fans, people in L.A. and obviously the people that knew him are feeling. My heart also goes out to the other victims’ families and friends. The whole thing is just tragic.

    • Josephine says:

      I have mixed feelings. I can’t imagine being a victim of someone who is being lauded extensively and unconditionally. It has to feel like your victimization, what you went through, has been forgotten and means absolutely nothing to anyone. At the same time, it’s not the time to remind the grieving family. I don’t know the answer, but I can’t help but think about the victims in these situations and the very complex feelings it must invoke.

  10. Lucy says:

    I don’t know, I still can’t believe this happened. Simply horrific.

    • ME says:

      It’s shocking isn’t it? I can’t even imagine how Vanessa and his daughters are coping. How do you bury your husband and daughter at the same time? No human should have to do that.

      • holly hobby says:

        One of the people who perished on that flight was the baseball coach, his wife and daughter (Gianna’s teammate). They left behind a sister and brother. Most of the family was gone because of this. Breaks my heart.

      • ME says:

        @holly hobby

        Too sad for words. Those poor kids.

  11. SJR says:

    Of course I am aware of Kobe.
    RIP all on this flight.
    Mrs. Bryant lost a husband and a child, heartbreaking.
    Families lost their dear ones in this tragedy, more than a celeb was lost, yes his death will bring media but other lives on board were just as valuable. Prayers to all in need, near and far.

  12. Noodle says:

    I live in the same community as the Mausers and Altobellis, and it’s heartbreaking to see how many peoples lives have been touched by them. This crash left an Altobelli Family daughter and son without parents, and without one sibling. John Altobelli was a baseball coach at a local community college, and touched the lives of so many young men in both high school and community college. Christina Mauser’s husband is the lead singer of a local band, the Tijuana Dogs and is well known in the community. I have/had no connection to either of these families, except as friends of friends of friends, but my heart is so heavy for all the families and kids.

    • Kate says:

      God, to hear all this compounds the sadness. 2 Kids were orphaned? 3 other kids lost their mama? Just so so awful. I had bad dreams all night and feel so down today and I’m not a sports fan but sudden tragedies like this just hit hard.

      • Noodle says:

        @Kate, me too. It’s just devastating. I had to turn it off last night, and disconnect from social media, because the posts and discussions were so overwhelming. Yes, the Altobelli family left behind a teen son and teen daughter. The two parents and their other teen daughter died in the crash. Christina Mauser left behind her husband and three children.

      • olive says:

        @Noodle the Altobelli son is either 29 or 30 (born 1990), he’s an adult. the surviving daughter is a teen.

    • FlowerPower says:

      Their last moments must have been terrifying. It’s truly upsetting. Imagine too, being with your child and knowing you can’t even save them.

    • Noodle says:

      @olive, thank you for that correction. You are correct about his age.

  13. eto says:

    Honestly still doesn’t feel real…prayed for the first time in loooong time for all the families.

  14. Lali says:

    Man, it feels so surreal…even his daughter passed. Imagine the hurt of that family….
    it’s so damn sad. I hope everyone in his family finds comfort in God or anything they believe in and be strong.

  15. Aims says:

    This is such a horrific tragedy. I feel for all the families. To lose a loved one in such a unexpected and tragic way is too much to bear. I’m also conflicted about Kobe’s past. But nobody deserves to lose their spouse and child. My heart breaks for the family members who have lost their people. It’s overwhelming and my mind can’t even comprehend how you heal or even cope. It’s just so sad.

  16. lucy2 says:

    It’s so tragic, especially the 3 kids. My heart breaks for all of the families and loved ones, I can’t even imagine.
    I don’t really follow the NBA, but it’s clear he was an extraordinary athlete. While the mention of his name always made me think about the rape allegation, I can appreciate that he spoke on it, expressed regret, and apologized to the young woman. I can’t imagine the feeling she has had over the past 20 years, and especially right now, and I hope she has always had good support around her.

  17. Moneypenny424 says:

    I was never a Kobe fan because of the sexual assault—but this has shook me. So many families have been devastated. He was a basketball legend, a wonderful dad and was doing a lot for kids and sports. It is complicated. Right now, I’m just so sad for these families.

  18. Tiffany :) says:

    TMZ blasted the headline before his family could be notified. The police have scolded them, but something more needs to be done. They’ve gotten the scoop on Whitney, Michael Jackson, Prince. It’s because they break the law and violate people’s privacy! Everyone deserves to have their medical info kept private, and everyone’s family deserves to hear devastating news from the professionals at the police department.

    • Tiffany says:

      Which just proves how far TMZ’s reach is. You can’t tell me they don’t have personnel in the police department on their payroll.

      • Cassandra says:

        Oh they absolutely do. I didn’t watch, but I saw someone posted a video that showed the scene of the accident and the person taking the video was definitely within walking distance.

      • Noodle says:

        The helicopter crashed into a hillside right behind Calabasas. There are a lot of homes in that area, and I am sure some of the neighbors saw and heard a lot. The Kardashians live quite close, as do a number of other celebrities.

    • MellyMel says:

      TMZ is absolutely horrible! I wish they would get in trouble for doing this, but I don’t even know if that’s a possibility. So unfair to the families.

    • Tiffany :) says:

      I need to clarify my comment! The police said they were still in process of notifying family members…but maybe his family knew and they were referencing the family members of other people who died. That was a big overstatement on my part. I’m home sick, and apologize for the mistake.

      • FlowerPower says:

        The LA County Sheriff’s office seemed really pissed, as in they were in the process of notifying the families and identifying all of the survivors when TMZ broke the story. Add to that all the other media outlets and people on twitter spreading misinformation trying to be the first to get the scoop. TMZ has some really scummy practices and I honestly can’t wait for all their “insiders” to be outed.

      • M.A.F. says:

        Around the 2:00 pm press conference yesterday the LA Country Sheriff office spoke person blasted TMZ, by name, for letting the information leak out. There have been countless articles about TMZ & how they conduct their business. It’s truly disgusting.

    • Allergy says:

      TMZ is such repulsive cesspit.

    • Liz version 700 says:

      TMZ is and was disgusting. No one should have to find out a parent or child died on TMZ.

  19. HeyThere! says:

    A mother, father and 13 year old passed leaving behind a few now orphaned children. Kobe and his daughter leave behind a heartbroken mother, infant, small child and a teenager. Another family lost their mom, leaving behind a devastated father and three children. I can’t even imagine the grief the families are going through. I think everything teaches me a lesson. This is teaching me to slow down and smell the roses. Call that friend you keep meaning too. Hug your partner and kids a little longer today. Take pictures. Be kind to people. I wasn’t a basketball fan but I understand the impact and heartbreak that is here. Too many lives cut short, so much grams for the ones left behind. Ugh. Now I’m tearing up.

  20. Léna says:

    Of course this accident is tragic. Families are grieving, children died. It’s horrible. But in all honesty, if Polanski or Weinstein had died in an helicopter crash, I bet more people would be saying different things. Is it the fact it was only one victim? Who knows.

    • oui oKi says:

      this is what I’m wondering after hearing a Washington post journalist is suspended for tweeting a 2016 article about the alleged rape. not that I was about so say anything but it made me wonder, does every death get a window? how bad do you have to be to not get window? apparently he raped one adult woman. what about woody Allen And Polanski? shorter windows or no window?

      • MellyMel says:

        That journalist was suspended because she posted some of the nasty emails she was receiving and didn’t black out the senders’ info. WaPo considers that doxing which is against their guidelines.

    • Meredith says:

      I was thinking the same thing yesterday when I saw celebrities who are otherwise all #feminism, #timesup, #metoo tweeting about how kind Kobe was and how he was a hero and my first thought was, “He wasn’t too kind to that woman he raped.” I think you can acknowledge the tragedy of his untimely death and his accomplishments as an athlete and send condolences to his family without making value judgements on his character.

      I don’t think Polanski and Weinstein are totally apt comparisons because Polanski was convicted (not that a conviction proves guilt or innocence, but to a lot of people it does) and Weinstein has a ton of known victims. I think Woody Allen is probably the most apt comparison and the comments when Woody Allen dies probably won’t be as generous as the ones I’ve seen here. I do think there are multiple things contributing to this reaction though:

      1. His young age and the fact that he’s been a well-known athlete since he was in high school
      2. The shocking nature of the accident
      3. The fact that his family was relatively well-known for an athlete’s family
      4. He only had one known victim and we haven’t really heard anything about her since the mid-aughts

    • Ange says:

      Apparently there were other women prepared to come forward until they saw how Kobe’s lawyers were behaving

      • DM2 says:

        Didn’t he also have over 100 affairs, too, and his wife even hired a PI at one time to investigate? I bet there were many other victims of ‘unconsensual’ acts, for sure, that are now silenced. My deepest sympathies for the other victims of this horrible tragedy, the children, and the loved ones left behind. Such a tragedy.

  21. Scarlett says:

    As a survivor of sexual assault, my heart goes out to the woman Kobe assaulted, imagine having to see your assaulter’s face over and over, imagine having to hear about how great a man he was while you know different , I wish her strength.

    As a wife and a mom, my heart goes out to Vanessa Bryant, having to bury my husband and child is my worst nightmare, I wish her strength.

    The other families who lost loved ones, this whole accident has left me shaken and I do not know any of these people personally… I cannot even imagine what their families are going through, I wish them all strength.

    Life isn’t always black or white, there is a lot of grey.

  22. Courtney says:

    When is the right time?
    •Not when men are young, they have their whole futures ahead of them! Don’t ruin a man’s life over 10 minutes of action.
    •Not when they’re middle aged. They have a wife, family. They have a daughter (to hide behind). Think of their career!
    • Not when they’re older either. We should respect our elders, the abuse/assault was a long time ago, they volunteered or went to church once so they’re “reformed”, etc.
    •Not when they’ve passed, because we shouldn’t speak ill of the dead, he’s not here to defend himself etc.
    So WHEN is it ok for a woman to discuss the abuse/assault from a man?

    • Dee says:

      This encompasses what I’m thinking/feeling today. If his past isn’t part of what is discussed today, when will it even be discussed? Tomorrow, something else will happen, and after the funeral, the news will have moved on.

      • Courtney says:

        My abuser died last year. It was difficult and re-opened a lot of old wounds. My thoughts are with the young woman he assaulted.

    • Noodle says:

      @Courtney, your statement about “10 minutes of action” brings up the “Affluenza” issue, and how much leeway we give to the wealthy or celebrities that we might not afford to anyone else. Celebrity deaths seem to be on a different plane than the deaths of “normal” people, and that can’t be separated from the timelines you provided. I am sure many people would like to wash away all of the celebrity’s past crimes forever because they are a celebrity, and clearly more important than you and me (assuming you aren’t a celebrity!).

    • Redgrl says:

      @courtney – this!

  23. ReginaGeorge says:

    I’ve though a lot about this in the last 24 hours, and I don’t necessarily think the problem is people mourning and expressing their feelings about this tragic situation. It’s seeing all the praise, adulation and hero worship and raising this human up to deity levels like he did no wrong is the problem. His life was complicated. He did something awful and terrible to another human being almost 20 years ago. He also hurt his wife in the process. He took accountability for what he did and seems during then and now to have learned from that and attempted to be a better person during that time.

    My immediate reaction to the news was sadness, but my next reaction, after reading so many people on social media turn him into an infallible super human, was to think of his victim and how she must be processing the world telling her that her rapist was this god by the way he was being exalted.

    Kobe was human. And multi-faceted. He was by any account, morally grey. Someone who did a terrible thing but since then has seemed to be trying to redeem himself (perhaps for his daughters more than anything) by supporting his family, helping disenfranchised kids, his charities, etc. I mean, would we rather he still be walking around acting entitled and hearing rumors of him continuing to assault women a la R Kelly, Chris Brown and the countless other sleazeballs who never seem to learn, and just continue a cycle BS? It’s complicated for sure.

    • Iknow says:

      You’ve said this way better than I had the skill to. The diffeence is Kobe seem to have made an effort to be better. He’s done many things post-sexual assault allegations to make me believe that he was trying to be a better person. This is a very complicated issue. We just have to leave space for everyone to feel how they feel. It’s ok for fans to feel his loss. It’s ok sexual assault victims to feel whatever they feel. The problem I have is when people judge others for how they feel about a complicated man and his legacy, whether good or bad.

    • Noodle says:

      One of my friends, who is a social worker, posted this yesterday, and I think it’s appropriate to this conversation: “It’s okay to grieve. We experience celebrities and establish a sense of connection to them and their work and the means by which they become a part of our lives. While we may feel odd experiencing grief for a stranger, it is an appropriate response to appreciating the legacies that touch our lives in culturally and and emotionally significant ways.”

  24. Belinda says:

    Roxane Gay’s tweet about Kobe and the situation was the best take I read.
    “There are going to be a lot of complicated reactions to Kobe Bryant’s death but I feel all the sympathy in the world for Vanessa Bryant and their four daughters. 41 is so young. And he had a spectacular professional career.”

    This situation is of course very triggering to people, especially women, who have been raped and were and are not believed because the rapist is a “beloved figure in the community”.

    There is the real pain of the family members left behind … and the real pain of the people who are seriously suffering through this news circle.

    • manda says:

      That is a great quote! I recently learned that the only reason the assault didn’t go to trial is because the victim didn’t want to testify (IIRC, testing had found other men’s semen on her underwear and everyone knows that would have been awful for her to have to deal with in court), so here she actually did have people that believed her

  25. McMe says:

    This is the most tragic and devastating news I’ve heard in a very long time. My heart aches for all of the families involved.
    My feelings for Kobe are also conflicted. I have to ask myself, when is a person allowed to be forgiven? When has a person done enough work on themselves, lived a positive enough life, and contributed enough to society to be forgiven? From some of the posts on this website, and not just this article, I guess the answer is never.

    • Courtney says:

      Do you think he took responsibility for his actions? Or do you think his defense team smeared and bullied a 19 year old girl into silence?

    • Dee says:

      Forgiveness is usually given after the person has asked for it and made atonement. Settling behind closed doors means we won’t know how he ended up treating the victim. She lives on with what he did to her, and it’s up to her to forgive him or not.

  26. Dani says:

    Unfortunately no one will ever really know what happened, especially since they settled out of court and with that said, all we can do is grieve for the 9 lost lives, three of them being innocent children. No one deserves to die in such a torturous way, especially with their child by their side. RIP to all those that perished, my heart goes out to their families. As someone who lost their father (not nearly in such a tragic way) at 23, I can’t even begin to imagine these kids are feeling at the loss of their mothers and fathers. Let’s come together and allow these people to heal without accusations. Life is so short.

  27. Frida_K says:

    There’s a lot more to him than the alleged rape.

    One thing is a celebrity whose persona is characterized by harassment, abuse, and/or rape charges. Is there a steady drumbeat of rumors about him harassing and abusing women that has dogged him over the course of his entire career? If that were the case, then what else is there to say? But that’s not what I’ve ever heard. He may not have been the most faithful guy on the planet, but he doesn’t have the stench of relentless harassment surrounding him. He was no Pedo Andy or Harvey Weinstein. He had one serious charge alleged and that was twenty years ago.

    He was an interesting person, even above and beyond the sports. He spoke Spanish and Italian fluently. He was clearly a person who easily moved between cultures. He was a brilliant athlete. A loving father, son, husband, and friend. He seemed to be very proud of his daughter’s interest in sports and quite ready to become a voice of support for female athletes. He had a future ahead of him, and so did his beautiful and gifted daughter.

    People are grieving now, and there is more to him than the one incident of twenty years ago. Me, I am very sad at this loss, and my thoughts are with his family and the families and loved ones of the other passengers in this tragic flight. That’s all.

    • Wilma says:

      It wasn’t one incident. The way the 19 year old was treated in court deterred at least one other accuser. And there have been more stories. You can start by searching on the website of thinkprogress or The Daily Beast.

      • Frida_K says:

        So you are saying that there is a history similar to that of Harvey Weinstein? That he was known as a serial abuser of women?

        I looked around and saw the one story. I’ve heard that he wasn’t always faithful, which is between him and his wife, but only found the one accusation (the Colorado case).

        I stand by my original comment.

      • Wilma says:

        If you read the article on thinkprogress you would have read that there are more stories and a reference to further reading on those.

      • Frida_K says:

        Which article? Cite the the source, please. According to the Guardian, and I quote, “There was never another criminal accusation directed at the superstar” (“Mourn Kobe Bryant or don’t: but mourn the whole, flawed man” by Joan Niesan).

        If he had been out drinking at a strip club and died on the way home, his past misdeeds would have been relevant from the first news of it.

        In my estimation, the context of his death is a factor in the framing of him at present. He died as a father taking his daughter, who also died, to the practice of the sport they loved. Her friend died, other parents died.

        Consequently, to see this first as a family tragedy makes some sense. And I wish the fact that he was fluently multilingual and multicultural got some attention because that says something about what kind of a person he was.

        My view is that there is more to Kobe Bryant than what he did twenty years ago. Once his body is cold, maybe start dredging up the more sordid past but right now? Yeah, no thanks.

        Joan Niesan’s article is well-reasoned and, I thought, good.

  28. Thea says:

    When I first heard about the crash, I was in disbelief. But then, I thought about the rape case and felt for the victim. And after learning about Gigi and the other passengers who perished away, I felt sad for the OC families who lost parents and siblings. The girls had such a bright future ahead. And I can’t even imagine losing a parent like that.

    It’s been really foggy here in Newport since Friday. I didn’t go up to LA this week, but it looks like it was just as foggy in Calabasas.

  29. Thea says:

    They IDed the other two victims – a mom & daughter. 😞

    • Noodle says:

      @Thea, the daughter went to Harborview Elementary. Her Principal posted a message today on Facebook. The whole school is in mourning. I’m in Huntington Beach, and I found out today the Mausers live three streets over from us. I’m sure Newport is reeling, especially since the families were prominent in our community.

  30. LaceEm says:

    I appreciate that this is the only site I’ve found where his past isn’t whitewashed but families are still being given time to grieve and absorb the shock. There is a time and place for everything and now is NOT the time.

    I think beyond Kobe and his legacy this is hitting people so hard because of 1. The children that died and 2. It might take some of us back to shock tragedies in our own past. Personally, as a mom, I’m shattered for Vanessa. I don’t think I could come back from what she’s going through. I also think of the children that were orphaned and the three now without a mom and it takes me back to losing my own mom. My mom was around Kobe’s age and I was around his eldest daughter’s age. It was a medical mistake and also unexpected. I can’t describe the effect it had on me and my younger sister, who was nine. I’m in my thirties and she’s mid-twenties now. We still haven’t fully healed because you never do. You accept and you find a way to move on but that hurt is always there on certain days – weddings she couldn’t help us plan, grandkids she’ll never spoil rotten, Christmas without our manic elf of a mama. I’m hurting for those kids because I’ve been those kids except I didn’t have to say my goodbye publicly and hear every grisly detail in the press. Heartbreaking.

  31. HeyThere! says:

    So I’m reading comments and I didn’t know Kobe did that. I remember the ‘I’m sorry’ yellow diamond ring he bought his wife! I have zero idea about rape.

    • petee says:

      It was a light purple diamond from what I remember and I can’t believe this 19 year old case is being brought up right now.You know there is a time and place for some things and this is one of them.This really is the only site that I have read that is bringing it up and feeling sorry for her.I am sure I will get kicked off for my comment but right now is not the time.

  32. Sparkly says:

    “Slow your roll” from the same writer as “believe women”. Nice.