Vanessa Bryant Remembers Daughter Gigi On What Would’ve Been Her 17th Birthday: ‘I Love You And Miss You So Much, Sweet Angel’
On Monday, Vanessa Bryant shared an Instagram post honoring her late daughter, Gigi, on what would have been her 17th birthday. “Happy 17th birthday, baby girl,” her post read. “I love you and miss you so much, sweet Angel.”
The 40-year-old mother honored her daughter’s memory with a heartwarming photo of Gigi smiling on a merry go round, as well as a photo of Gigi with her sisters.
Vanessa Bryant on IG ❤️ pic.twitter.com/tExxqDqwHQ
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) May 1, 2023
Some of the family’s closest friends showed love to Gigi in a video message titled #PlayGigisWay. The video, created by Nike, included messages from NBA star Giannis Antetekounmpo, WNBA star Sabrina Ionescu, Gigi’s friend Aubrey Callaghan, Los Angeles Lakers legend Pau Gasol, and Gigi’s coach Jon Grogan.
Gigi’s supporters spoke about her inspiring personality and the traits that made her stand out on and off the court.
“Playing Gigi’s way to me means completely devoting yourself to the process of being the absolute best player and the best person that you can be,” Ionescu said in the clip.
Vanessa Bryant paid an emotional tribute to her late daughter, Gigi, on her 17th birthday. pic.twitter.com/4zqqxLhXNC
— Would You Wear (@wywofficial_) May 1, 2023
Nike also honored Gigi on Monday by announcing the release of The Kobe IV Protro “Mambacita.” The signature shoe will benefit the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation, TMZ reported.
The Kobe IV Protro “Mambacita” celebrates Gianna “Gigi” Bryant’s 17th birthday. We dare you to #PlayGigisWay, to be competitive, joyful, and curious and never take any opportunity for granted, just like Gigi.
Available starting 5.1 on SNKRS in select regions. pic.twitter.com/j4MH8j5gP2
— Nike Basketball (@nikebasketball) April 28, 2023
Gigi and her beloved father, 18-time All-Star Kobe Bryant, died in a helicopter crash in 2020. The crash also claimed the lives of seven other passengers, including Gigi’s friends and their loved ones.