Kobe Bryant, US basketball icon, and Gianna, his 13-year-old daughter, have died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California.
According to TMZ, the NBA star was travelling alongside three other persons when his private helicopter crashed on Sunday.
The news outlet would later report that Gianna was also on board the helicopter and died in the crash. The duo were reportedly on their way to the Mamba Academy for a basketball practice when the crash occurred.
It was gathered that there were no survivors. The cause of the crash remains unknown while investigation is ongoing.
The Los Angeles county sheriff’s department also took to its official Twitter page to confirm that there was a crash, with five persons feared dead.
“Investigation ongoing. Avoid the area until further notice.”
Hours before the tragedy, Bryant had congratulated LeBron James on Twitter, after the latter passed the former on the NBA’s all-time scoring list during the Lakers’ game with the Philadelphia 76ers.
Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother ?? #33644— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) January 26, 2020
The post, which has been retweeted more than 180,000 times — as of the time this report was filed — would be his last tweet before his passing on.
The Philadelphia native began his career in the NBA with the Los Angeles Lakers at 17.
Bryant would later spend the rest of his 20-year career with the club, winning five NBA championships and 18 All-Star titles before he retired in 2016.
He was voted the NBA’s ‘Most Valuable Player in 2008’ and went on to win two gold medals with the USA men’s basketball team in 2008 and 2012.
The 41-year-old former Los Angeles Lakers basketball star was widely considered to be one of the greatest basketball players of all-time.
Bryant is survived by Vanessa, his wife, and their three daughters — Natalia, Bianca and Capri.