What we know about crash that killed NBA, Lakers legend Kobe Bryant
Nine people died in a helicopter crash Sunday in Southern California, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.
The victims include basketball icon Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and Orange Coast College baseball coach John Altobelli.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver confirmed the death of Bryant, 41, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna in a statement Sunday.
“The NBA family is devastated by the tragic passing of Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna," Silver said.
“For 20 seasons, Kobe showed us what is possible when remarkable talent blends with an absolute devotion to winning. He was one of the most extraordinary players in the history of our game with accomplishments that are legendary: five NBA championships, an NBA MVP award, 18 NBA All-Star selections, and two Olympic gold medals. But he will be remembered most for inspiring people around the world to pick up a basketball and compete to the very best of their ability.
He was generous with the wisdom he acquired and saw it as his mission to share it with future generations of players, taking special delight in passing down his love of the game to Gianna.
“We send our heartfelt condolences to his wife, Vanessa, and their family, the Lakers organization and the entire sports world.”
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said in an afternoon news conference the helicopter's passenger manifest indicated nine people were on board. There were no survivors.
“It is entirely inappropriate right now to identify anyone by name,” Villanueva said.
Firefighters had to douse a quarter-acre brush fire, said fire Capt. Tony Imbrenda.
News of the tragedy shocked the basketball community in which Bryant had established himself as a legend and all-time great.
On Saturday night, the two-time NBA Finals MVP and two-time Olympic gold medalist congratulated LeBron James on passing him for third place on the all-time scoring list.
Hours later, he was gone.
Here's what is known thus far about the death of Kobe Bryant.
Kobe Bryant dies in helicopter crash
Imbrenda, who spoke shortly after the crash, said an investigation had begun to determine its cause. He said the helicopter model was a Sikorsky S-76 and that a fire broke out upon impact in the hills of Calabasas, California — about 30 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles. A 9-1-1 call was received at 9:47 a.m. local time. Firefighters battled a quarter-acre brush fire.