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City of Coachella pays tribute to Kobe & Gianna Bryant


The City of Coachella paid tribute to fallen Laker legend Kobe Bryant on Tuesday.

Kobe and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna "Gigi" Maria Onore Bryant were among nine people killed in a helicopter crash while on their way to a basketball game on Sunday morning. Gianna was expected to play in the game and Kobe was expected to coach, according to Lady Mavericks team director Evelyn Morales.

Tributes and memorials have popped up across the country and around the world.

Here in the Coachella Valley, the La Quinta High School and Xavier College Prep girls basketball teams held a moment of silence to honor the victims of the crash.

Coachella paid tribute right in the heart of its city.

The "Etherea," located at the intersection of Cesar Chavez Street and 6th Street, was illuminated in purple and gold Tuesday evening. The colors that defined the career of the "Black Mamba."

In honor of Kobe and Gigi Bryant at Etherea in downtown Coachella. #RIPMamba #RIPGianna #Mamba4Life #Gigi4Life #MambaLegend #Kobe #Lakers #mamba #etherea #YourCoachella

Posted by City of Coachella on Tuesday, January 28, 2020

The "Etherea" was created by Italian artist Eduardo Tresoldi. Kobe notably grew up in Italy, moving to the town of Rieti when he was 6 years old.

The transparent sculpture was featured as an art piece during the 2018 Coachella Music & Arts Festival. It was then gifted to the city of Coachella and unveiled in February 2019.

Kobe and Gianna were joined on the flight by Orange Coast College baseball coach John Altobelli, his wife Keri and his daughter Alyssa. Alyssa and Gianna were teammates, according to John Altobelli's brother.

Watch: Coachella Valley baseball community reacts to the death of Orange Coast College coach John Altobelli

Another parent, Christina Mauser, was killed in the crash along with 13-year-old Payton Chester and her mother Sarah Chester. Payton's grandmother, Cathy Chester, said they were on their way to the same basketball game.

The pilot of the helicopter was identified by the coroner'ss office as Ara Zobayan.

The FBI and National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the crash. An NTSB board member stated it could take 18 months to determine what caused the crash.

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Jesus Reyes


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