Vanessa Bryant found a letter from late NBA legend Kobe Bryant the day before her birthday. The envelope from her husband was addressed to “The Love of my Life” and was signed “Tu Papi.” Vanessa waited until May 5, her 38th birthday, to unseal the envelope.
Kobe and their daughter Gianna “Gigi” Bryant died in a helicopter accident in January. He was 41 and she was 13. Seven others died in the fatal crash, which had no survivors.
The couple had four daughters together: Gigi, Natalia, Capri and Bianka.
Vanessa Bryant Waited to Open the Love Letter on Her Birthday
Vanessa posted a picture of her herself holding the letter. “Yesterday I found an envelope labeled To: The Love of my Life. From, Tu Papi,” she wrote on May 5. “I waited to open one more letter on my birthday. It gave me something to look forward to today. Missing the Love of my Life and my sweet little Mamacita- my fellow Taurus. Grateful to wake up to my 3 sweet girls today. Wish we were all together.” She didn’t reveal what Kobe wrote.
At a February memorial service for Kobe and Gigi, Vanessa talked about her husband being romantic and leaving her notes. “He was thoughtful and always wrote the best love letters and cards, and Gigi had his wonderful ability to express her feelings into paper and make you feel her love through his words,” she said. “She was thoughtful like him. They were so easy to love.”
Vanessa received messages from celebrities on her birthday. On her Instagram Story, she shared shoutouts from stars like LaLa Anthony and Kelly Rowland. “To one of the strongest women I know,” Rowland wrote. “Have a beautiful day.”
Vanessa Remembered Gigi on Her Birthday
On May 1, Vanessa celebrated what would have been Gianna’s 14th birthday. She posted pictures of a red bracelet that had Gianna’s name on it and a red sweatshirt. Vanessa said she is working to create more of the bracelets so fans can buy them. Proceeds will go toward the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation, Vanessa wrote:
Gianna loved to wear a red bow in all of her school pictures. Red means love and life. To commemorate Gigi’s birthday today, please consider wearing red, caption an act of kindness or show how you will play Gigi’s way since she always gave everything she did her all and led with kindness.
Vanessa Mourned Kobe’s ‘Senseless’ Death
On what would have been his anniversary from retiring from the NBA last month, Vanessa said her husband’s death was “senseless.” “My husband worked his ass off for 20 years. Gave it his all,” she wrote on April 13. “All he wanted was to spend time with our girls and me to make up for lost time.”
“I wish I could go back to that morning, every day,” she continued. “I wish they had a normal local game on 1/26. Life truly isn’t fair. This is just senseless.”
On April 18 she posted an Instagram to “My king, my heart, my best friend” on what would have been their 19th wedding anniversary.