Kobe Bryant death anniversary sees fan tributes pour in

'The world is truly missing a great one,' former basketball player Vince Carter says

A mural depicting the late Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, in Los Angeles, California. AFP
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Two years have passed since the death of basketball player Kobe Bryant, who was killed in a helicopter crash in California in 2020.

Bryant, 41, and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, were killed in the crash in Calabasas, outside Los Angeles, along with seven others including the pilot.

Los Angeles Times reporter Richard Winton said a small statue of Kobe and Gianna Bryant has been temporarily erected at the crash site while a sculptor completes a life-size memorial that will be installed permanently at a later date.

Bryant was an All-Star player and was twice named the most valuable player in the NBA. He played for the popular Los Angeles Lakers for 20 seasons.

He was also a two-time Olympic gold medallist.

ESPN analyst and former basketball player Vince Carter tweeted on Wednesday about sharing his birthday with the tragic event.

“I'm thankful to see another year of life but it's really tough to celebrate when the world lost a great human being on this same day,” he wrote. “Rest well Kobe — the world is truly missing a great one.”

“So on this day I celebrate you and I say thank you for the battles and the friendship.”

The Lakers' Twitter account on Wednesday posted a photo of Bryant sitting courtside with Gianna, the caption reading: “Family is Forever.”

Bryant is survived by his wife, Vanessa Bryant, and Gianna's three sisters, Natalia, Bianka and Capri.

Over the past three weeks, Ms Bryant posted a series of photos of her husband and daughter on Instagram with the caption: “My babies … My world. 2 years ago.”

Updated: April 27, 2022, 1:37 PM