Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna were laid to rest side-by-side at a private ‘family estate’ burial plot where heart rosaries are placed on their headstone.
The father and daughter’s funeral service was held quietly last Friday at Pacific View Memorial Park in Corona del Mar, California with no photographers present, following their tragic helicopter deaths on January 26.
The private plot is at the very top of the cemetery and looks directly down onto Newport Coast toward Bryant’s family home and the Pacific Ocean.
Newly planted purple and yellow flowers, which are representative of Bryant’s Lakers team colors, surround the burial plot, as do ‘love’ balloons, Valentine’s Day decorations and colorful flower pinwheels – which signify a child’s death.
The unmarked headstone – which is waiting for inscription – has heart rosaries placed on either side of it, representative of the family’s Catholic faith.
Bryant and Gianna had attended church together and took communion the morning they died.
An employee at Pacific View Mortuary & Memorial Park said the plot is one of the most expensive in the cemetery.
The price for a private family estate plot starts at $450,000.
In death certificates released this week by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health, their causes of death are listed as blunt trauma and indicated they died in a ‘rapid’ manner in the crash in the hills of Calabasas.
On Thursday, Bryant’s widow Vanessa renamed Bryant’s charity to honor Gianna, announcing that the Mamba Sports Foundation will now be known as the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation.
‘Because there is no #24 without #2, we have updated the Mamba Sports Foundation to now be called the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation,’ Vanessa wrote on her Instagram account.
‘Our mission remains the same – and stronger than ever – to provide opportunities to young people through sports,’ she continued.
‘Thank you all for the outpouring of support and your kind donations to date as we carry forth Kobe and Gigi’s legacy.
‘We hope to empower young athletes in a world they left us all to help shape.’
A public memorial is scheduled for Bryant on February 24 at the Staples Center.
The date pays tribute to the ’24’ jersey number that Bryant wore since the 2006-07 season.
Bryant is survived by Vanessa and his other daughters Natalia, 17; Bianka, three; and Capri, seven months.
Vanessa said in an Instagram post on Monday that she was both grieving and angry over the loss of her husband and daughter.
The 37-year-old mother has made few public appearances since the crash that killed her husband, daughter and seven others and said in the social media post that she had been ‘reluctant’ to put her feelings into words.
‘My brain refuses to accept that both Kobe and Gigi are gone,’ she said, using a nickname for her daughter. ‘I can’t process both at the same time. It’s like I’m trying to process Kobe being gone but my body refuses to accept my Gigi will never come back to me.’
Vanessa said she felt anger at losing both her husband and daughter and has to remind herself to be strong for the couple’s three surviving daughters.
‘God I wish they were here and this nightmare would be over,’ she said. ‘Praying for all of the victims of this horrible tragedy. Please continue to pray for all.’