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Vanessa Bryant stands in front of mural honoring late Kobe and Gigi Bryant in Philadelphia: ‘Where my husband’s love for basketball all began’

PUBLISHED June 15, 2022 | News

Vanessa Bryant took to Instagram Tuesday with a shot in front of a new mural in Philadelphia dedicated to her late husband Kobe Bryant and their daughter Gigi.

Vanessa, 40, donned the late NBA icon’s varsity jacket from Lower Merion High School in Philadelphia as she stood in front of the artwork.

Vanessa said in the caption she was in the City of Brotherly Love to commemorate the opening of a pair of basketball courts named after Kobe and Gianna at the Tustin Playground, where the courts were built working with the charitable organization Dream Courts and organizer Nancy Lieberman.

‘PHILADELPHIA … where my husband’s love for basketball all began,’ Vanessa said in the caption. ‘Today, in the historic Tustin Playground and thanks to the generous contributions of donors, fans, and friends, our foundation @mambamambacitasports opened 2 more @dream_courts with @nlcharities, which were beautifully surrounded by the artwork of’ Ernel Martinez.
She continued: ‘I chose this location so that young people in this community may have a safe space to play with equal opportunity which was important to Kobe and Gianna. We are grateful to the City of Philadelphia, @muralarts for welcoming this project and helping to make it a reality.’

Shots of the new courts were showcased on the Instagram accounts of Vanessa and Dream Courts, showing a circle at the half-court that read Kobe & Gianna Bryant. The courts are decked out in the purple and yellow colors of Bryant’s Los Angeles Lakers with Kobe’s number 24 encased in a heart at each of the foul lines.

Vanessa received a slew of supportive responses amid the dedication of the courts, as Lieberman wrote, ‘You are the the essence of love and giving lasting legacy to your hubby and baby girl. We are honored to be by your side Vanessa.’

La La Anthony wrote, ‘Incredible V. Love you,’ while Ciara said, ‘So beautiful V;’ Khloe Kardashian posted seven heart emojis in response to the post.

In a separate post in which Vanessa posed with Lieberman on the court, Vanessa said she was ‘especially grateful’ for the collaboration with Lieberman, saying that ‘she embodies everything Kobe and Gianna valued in her fight to empower women in sports and provide opportunities for underserved athletes.’

Last month, Vanessa presided over the opening of The Kobe and Gianna Bryant Dream Court at Anaheim, California’s Pearson Park.

Vanessa continues to honor the memory of Kobe, 41, and Gigi, 13, following their deaths with seven others in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California on January 26, 2020. Also killed in the crash were pilot Ara Zobayan, 50, Payton Chester, 13, Sarah Chester, 46, Alyssa Altobelli, 14, Keri Altobelli, 46, John Altobelli, 56, and Christina Mauser, 38.