Vanessa Bryant showed love for Kobe Bryant on what would have been his 43rd birthday. “Happy birthday, Papi. Te Amo por siempre. Amor Eterno. ❤️💔 43,” Vanessa, 39, wrote on Instagram Monday in a tribute that translates to, “I love you forever. Eternal love.” In the comments section, several of Vanessa’s celebrity friends sent their well wishes.
Kelly Rowland commented, “❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️,” while Ciara also shared three heart emojis. The 41-year-old NBA legend died in January 2020 in a tragic helicopter crash in Calabasas, Calif. The couple’s 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, was also killed in the accident. Natalia — who just started her freshman year at the University of Southern California — also posted a tribute to her late dad Monday.
“Happy Birthday Daddy ❤️,” she captioned a throwback photo of herself sitting on Kobe’s lap during a press conference. Lala Anthony commented, “Love you ❤️❤️❤️❤️,” and Kendall Jenner left a heart emoji. Celebrity stylist Rachel Zoe chimed in, “❤️❤️ Happy Birthday to the best of the best.” Before dropping Natalia off at college earlier this month, Vanessa shared a heartfelt message to the teen on Instagram.
“Tears of joy. I’m SO happy for you Nani! I know daddy is so PROUD OF YOU. I am so PROUD OF YOU!! Your hard work and dedication was so worth it,” she wrote. “You pushed through the most excruciating pain imaginable and you succeeded,” Vanessa added. “I wish Daddy and Gigi were physically here to celebrate but I know they’re here in spirit. We love you so much! #USC #Trojan #FightOn.“
She also gifted Natalia a pair of custom USC Black Mamba Nike sneakers so Kobe could be with her “every step of the way.” “I had these shoes made for @nataliabryant in hopes she’d get in to her top school,” Vanessa shared at the time. “Daddy and Gigi are ALWAYS here. Forever and always Principessa. ❤️#USC #TROJAN ✌🏽#FIGHTON.”