Gianna, the 13-year-old daughter of Kobe Bryant, a US basketball legend, has been identified as one of the victims who died in a helicopter crash that killed her father on Sunday.
Also said to have died in the crash alongside Bryant and his daughter were a teammate of Gianna, the teammate’s parent and the pilot, NBC News reports.
The helicopter, a Sikorsky S-76 owned by Bryant, crashed in the hills near Calabasas around 10 am Sunday.
The helicopter took off from John Wayne Airport in Orange County, California, with five persons initially reported on board and was said to be heading to a basketball game of Bryant’s daughter when it crashed.
However, Sheriff Osby, the LA County Sheriff, speaking at a news conference later on Sunday said the helicopter manifested showed that nine persons were on board, comprising the pilot and eight passengers.
Although the cause of the crash remains unknown, it has been suggested that the foggy conditions across the California skyline on Sunday might have contributed to the tragedy.
Byrant, who was born in Philadelphia in 1978, played 20 seasons for the Los Angeles Lakers based in California.
He entered the NBA directly from high school (secondary school) and won five NBA championships. He was an 18-time All-Star, 15-time member of the All-NBA Team, 12-time member of the All-Defensive team and was the NBA’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) in 2008.