Kobe Bryant death: Barack Obama, Donald Trump pay tribute to NBA legend

Kobe Bryant's death prompted messages from United States presidents past and present in Barack Obama and Donald Trump.

Kobe with Obama

Obama wrote on Twitter that the NBA "legend" had been "just getting started" on his "second act".   -  AFP

Former United States president Barack Obama paid tribute to Kobe Bryant following the death of the Los Angeles Lakers great.

Bryant, 41, an 18-time NBA All-Star, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna died on Sunday, the league announced, following a helicopter crash near Calabasas, California.

The former Lakers star spent his entire 20-year career with the Los Angeles team, winning five championships.

 

Bryant had various business interests following his retirement, too, and won an Academy Award for his short film 'Dear Basketball'.

Obama wrote on Twitter that the NBA "legend" had been "just getting started" on his "second act".

The former president, a father of two, also reflected on Gianna's "heartbreaking" death.

"Kobe was a legend on the court and just getting started in what would have been just as meaningful a second act," Obama said.

"To lose Gianna is even more heartbreaking to us as parents. Michelle and I send love and prayers to Vanessa and the entire Bryant family on an unthinkable day."

 

Current president Donald Trump relayed reports of Bryant's death on his own Twitter page and wrote: "That is terrible news!"

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