Though we have heard Vanessa's pain through her words, their eldest daughter Natalia has a different way of honoring her family.
When NBA legend Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, who was well on her way to following in her father's footsteps, passed away in the infamous helicopter crash, the world was devastated. But amongst those grieving, it was his family that was hit the hardest. While Bryant's wife, Vanessa, has found a way to talk about her pain, for the first time, their eldest daughter Natalia has finally found a way to pay tribute to her late dad and baby sister.
On her way to her winter formal, the 17-year-old stopped by a mural that was created by a fan honoring Bryant and Gianna and posed with it, according to People. Her mom shared the photo of the decked-up teenager in her blue and white polka-dotted dress, before her high school dance and you can see a bright smile on the young woman's face. Vanessa captioned the photo, "❤️ my babies. Natalia. #winterformal."
Once the photo was uploaded, fans flooded the post with comforting and sweet messages to cheer Natalia on. After all, the bright smile might hide the teenager's true grief of losing two precious members of her family. "She’s beautiful and so is that mural. 😍😍," one fan wrote while another commented, "This warms my heart and at the same time saddens it. Good to see you girls pushing through."
An Instagram user said, "To see her smiling means everything in this moment 🙏🏼 May God continue to give you and your family peace and strength to LIVE ❤️," while basketball star Dwayne Wade responded with heart emoji. One fan wrote, "Stunning! I can’t imagine the strength is take for all of you to smile! (sic.)" Messages of support and love kept pouring in, showing the family that they aren't alone.
This photo comes just a little more than two weeks after Vanessa delivered a heartbreaking speech in honor of her husband and young 13-year-old at their memorial service at the Staples Center, Los Angeles. The mother and widow spoke about her two loves.
She started off by talking about Gianna, whom people affectionately called Gigi. "She had the best laugh. It was infectious, it was pure and genuine. Kobe and Gianna naturally gravitated toward each other. We will not be able to see Gianna go to highschool with Natalia... we didn’t get the chance to teach her how to drive a car." She ended her tribute to Gianna by saying, “I miss you, all of you, every day.” As for her husband, she said, "We loved each other with our whole beings, two perfectly imperfect people making a beautiful family and raising our sweet and amazing girls."
She wrapped up her speech saying, "They were so easy to love. Everyone naturally gravitated toward them. They were funny, happy, silly and they loved life. They were so full of joy and adventure. God knew they couldn’t be on this earth without each other. He had to bring them home to have them together." She also told her beloved husband, “Babe, you take care of our Gigi. And I got Nani, B.B. and Koko. We’re still the best team. May you both rest in peace and have fun in Heaven until we meet again one day. We love you both and miss you. Forever and always, Mommy.”
R.I.P Kobe Byrant, Gianna, and the seven other victims of the tragic helicopter crash.