Somebody to lean on. Vanessa Bryant’s mother, Sofia Laine, has “been her rock” in the weeks since her husband, Kobe Bryant, and their 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, lost their lives in a tragic helicopter crash on January 26.
Vanessa, 37, “is incredibly close to her mom and her mom has been her rock throughout the past few weeks,” a source tells Us Weekly exclusively. “Her mom is always with her and the girls [Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri, 7 months] and she’s been keeping Vanessa strong and she’s the weight of her support system.”
On Monday, February 10, Vanessa opened up about losing both her teenage daughter and husband of nearly two decades at the same time. She shared a video to Instagram of Kobe coaching Gianna and her teammates.
“I’ve been reluctant to put my feelings into words. My brain refuses to accept that both Kobe and Gigi are gone,” she wrote. “I can’t process both at the same time. It’s like I’m trying to process Kobe being gone but my body refuses to accept my Gigi will never come back to me. It feels wrong.”
Vanessa continued, “Why should I be able to wake up another day when my baby girl isn’t being able to have that opportunity?! I’m so mad. She had so much life to live. Then I realize I need to be strong and be here for my 3 daughters. Mad I’m not with Kobe and Gigi but thankful I’m here with Natalia, Bianka and Capri.”
Kobe and Gianna were among nine people who perished on a private helicopter last month. The aircraft crashed into a hillside in Calabasas, California, and burst into flames.
Vanessa initially broke her silence on the tragedy via Instagram on January 29, sharing a photo of her family smiling together. She thanked everyone for their support during the trying period, but noted how “completely devastated” she was by loss of her husband, daughter and all other individuals involved in the accident.
“There aren’t enough words to describe our pain right now. I take comfort in knowing that Kobe and Gigi both knew that they were so deeply loved,” she continued. “We were so incredibly blessed to have them in our lives. I wish they were here with us forever. They were our beautiful blessings taken from us too soon.”
Vanessa and Kobe tied the knot in 2001. In his 20-year athletic career with the Los Angeles Lakers, he was a five-time NBA champion, 18-time All-Star and scored a whopping 33,643 points on the court. He was 41.
Us confirmed that a private service was held for Kobe and Gianna in Corona Del Mar, California, on February 7. A second funeral will be held in their honor at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Monday, February 24. The Staples Center service will be open to the public.
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