Kobby Bryant dies in a helicopter crash
US basketball legend Kobe Bryant has been killed in a helicopter crash in the city of Calabasas, California.
Bryant was travelling in a private helicopter when it burst into flames, according to media reports.
The LA County Sheriff’s department said five people died in the helicopter crash on Sunday, with no survivors.
Confirming the death, the City of Calabasas confirmed the news with “great sadness”. It said “nobody on the ground was hurt”.
Eyewitnesses told news site TMZ they heard the helicopter’s engine spluttering before it went down.
The cause of the crash is being investigated.
Five-time NBA champion Bryant, 41, played his entire 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers. He retired in April 2016.
Bryant’s achievements include being the 2008 NBA Most Valuable Player and two-time NBA Finals MVP. He was also two-time NBA scoring champion and a two-time Olympic champion.
He also won an Oscar for best short animated film in 2018 for Dear Basketball, a five-minute film based on a love letter to the sport he had written in 2015.
Born in Philadelphia, Bryant was drafted to the NBA straight out of Lower Merion High School near Philadelphia in 1996. He was the youngest player in NBA history at that time, at 18 years, 2 months and 11 days.
Bryant played his entire professional career with the Los Angeles Lakers and won five NBA championships.
Bryant has two Olympic gold medals for men’s basketball.
Bryant retired in April 2016.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti called Bryant a “giant who inspired, amazed, and thrilled people everywhere with his incomparable skill on the court — and awed us with his intellect and humility as a father, husband, creative genius, and ambassador for the game he loved.
“He will live forever in the heart of Los Angeles, and will be remembered through the ages as one of our greatest heroes.”
Source: bbc.com & cnn.com