Kobe Bryant’s wife Vanessa has made her Instagram account public for the first time since the LA Lakers star’s tragic death alongside their daughter Gianna.
The NBA legend died on Sunday (26 January) aged 41 in a helicopter crash that also killed 13-year-old Gianna and seven other people in Calabasas, California. Vanessa, 37, has yet to address her heartbreaking loss publicly, but she appears to have acknowledged the deaths by changing her profile picture to one of Kobe and Gianna together.
In the sweet image, Kobe is seen smiling down at Gianna who has her arms flung around the basketball star. It was taken at the NBA All-Star Game in Toronto, Canada back in 2016. Gianna was Kobe and Vanessa’s second child, as they also share daughters Natalia, 17, Bianka, three, and seven-month-old Capri.
Vanessa’s return to Instagram comes after a source revealed she is ‘trying to be the strong one’ for her daughters while grieving the tragic deaths. An insider said: ‘It’s an extremely difficult and devastating time for Vanessa and the whole family.
They went on to claim that Vanessa, who was married to Kobe for 18 years, ‘can hardly keep it together’ and struggles to ‘finish a sentence without crying’.According to the source: ‘But she is working very hard to pull it together for the other girls. She now has to be the strong one. Of course, you can never be prepared for this. Despite their ups and downs, [Vanessa and Kobe] were soulmates. She thought of him as her partner for life.’
The source says that Vanessa and the three other daughters she shared with the basketball icon are surrounded by family and friends who ‘love her and love Kobe’.
‘She has a good support system,’ the insider revealed. ‘She is relying on her faith. She is not alone. But she will be grieving this for a very long time.’
Kobe and Vanessa, who married in 2001 after several months of dating, had just celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary in December. All nine bodies have been removed from the crash site in Calabasas and a coroner has confirmed the identities of some of those on-board, including Kobe.
Photo Credit: Getty