Vanessa Bryant is set to receive a special gift from the Staples Center. On Sunday, February 3, workers at the arena began dismantling the makeshift memorial created by fans left in honor of Kobe and Gianna Bryant. Per Vanessa’s request, some of the items will be sent to her home for the family to keep. “We begin the cleanup at 4am @LALIVE XBOX Plaza and we have now boxed 1353 basketballs dedicated to Kobe and Gianna,” Lee Zeidman, president of the Staples Center, L.A. Live and Microsoft Theatre’s post read. “Truly amazing the outpouring of love from the City of Angeles in honor of the 9 who lost their lives 1/26/20.”
In all, over the course of a week, fans left 14 banners, 25,000 candles, 5,000 signs/letters/flags, 500 stuffed animals and 350 pairs of shoes. In addition, Lee revealed that the thousands of flowers will be made into mulch and spread throughout the landscaping around LA Live and the Staples Center.
In Friday, Vanessa took to her social media to share fan made artwork dedicated to her late daughter. “Seeing my babygirl smile and happy again with a basketball under her arm, wrapped in [purple heart][yellow heart] emoji love just warmed by heart. Thank you for this @_vivalareina thank you!! My Gigi #Mambacita.”
In the piece Gianna smiles as she wears a purple jacket over Kobe jersey with the number 24. Gianna, 13, and Kobe, 40, were amongst the nine people who passed away on January 26, following a helicopter accident.
Almost a week after the incident, Vanessa who also shared daughters Natalia, 14, three-year-old Bianka and seven-month-old Capri, with the Lakers star sent out a message of love on behalf of her family. “My girls and I want to thank the millions of people who’ve shown support and love during this horrific time. Thank you for all the prayers. We definitely need them,” the statement read in part. “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.”