NBA legend Kobe Bryant has been killed in a helicopter crash along with his teenage daughter – according to US media reports.
The 41-year-old died after the aircraft came down in California on Sunday morning, the City of Calabasas said in a tweet.
Image: Kobe Bryant only ever played for the Los Angeles Lakers
It posted: “It is with great sadness that we learn of the death of Kobe Bryant and four others in a helicopter crash in Calabasas.
It is with great sadness that we learn of the death of Kobe Bryant and four others in a helicopter crash in Calabasas. The aircraft went down in a remote field off Las Virgenes around 10:00 this morning. Nobody on the ground was hurt. The FAA and NTSB are investigating.
— City of Calabasas (@CityofCalabasas) January 26, 2020
Image: LA county firefighters on the scene of the crash in Calabasas, California
Image: LA county firefighters at the scene of the crash
“The aircraft went down in a remote field off Las Virgenes around 10:00 this morning. Nobody on the ground was hurt. The FAA and NTSB are investigating”.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff tweeted to say that five people were killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas and that there were no survivors.
Five people confirmed deceased, no survivors in #Calabasas helicopter crash. #LASD #Malibu deputies remain with #LA County Fire personnel. Investigation ongoing.Avoid the area until further notice.
— LA County Sheriffs (@LASDHQ) January 26, 2020
The sheriff’s department also posted pictures of the scene as smoke could be seen emerging from the brush in a ravine.
The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating what happened.
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Bryant, who was born in Philadelphia in 1978, was drafted at number 13 by the Charlotte Hornets in 1996, but was immediately traded to the Los Angeles Lakers.
The 18-time NBA All-Star won five championships and became one of the greatest basketball players of his generation during a 20-year career spent entirely with the Lakers.
They retired both of his shirt numbers – eight and 24 – in a ceremony in December 2017.
Then-franchise president Magic Johnson said: “We’re here to celebrate the greatest who has ever worn the purple and gold.”
Image: Authorities say the helicopter came down in a remote field off Las Virgenes around 10am (local) on Sunday
He retired in 2016 as the third-leading scorer in NBA history and held that spot until Saturday night, when the Lakers’ LeBron James passed him for third place during a game in Philadelphia, Bryant’s hometown.
In his last tweet, Bryant said: “Continuing to move the game forward (at) KingJames. Much respect my brother”.
Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother ?? #33644
— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) January 26, 2020
Tributes are pouring in on social media, with US President Donald Trump tweeting to say Bryant’s death is “terrible news”.
Reports are that basketball great Kobe Bryant and three others have been killed in a helicopter crash in California. That is terrible news!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 26, 2020
Actor Idris Elba says Bryant “will always be remembered” – and that it was a “sad day”.
In one of several tweets posted by Piers Morgan, he said there were “few bigger icons in the history of world sport than Kobe Bryant” – and that this was “desperately sad news. RIP”.
NBA Hall of Famer Bill Russell says he is “absolutely shocked” to hear the news.
Source : Sky News