The Heartbreaking Emotional Tribute Kobe Bryant Made to His Wife Vanessa Weeks Before His Death

Kobe Bryant’s death is still fresh on the minds of people around the world. Celebrities, basketball fans, and people who didn’t care about sports at all are all still reeling from the basketball player’s unexpected death. Though Bryant was a cultural icon and his death has affected millions, those closest to him are undoubtedly going through an unimaginable amount of pain.

Kobe Bryant and Vanessa Bryant
Kobe Bryant and Vanessa Bryant | Frank Micelotta/Getty Images

For Vanessa Bryant, nothing could have prepared her for the loss that she experienced on Sunday. She lost both her husband of almost twenty years and her 13-year-old daughter, Gianna.

Since Kobe’s death, people have been reminiscing on his and Vanessa’s two-decade-long relationship. And it turns out that Kobe posted the sweetest tribute to his wife just weeks before he died.

How did Kobe and Vanessa meet?

Kobe met Vanessa way back in 1999 at the music video shoot for Tha Eastsidaz’s “G’d up.” When they met, Vanessa was a 17-year-old highschooler. When she turned, 18, Kobe proposed. The two were married in April of 2001.

Kobe and Vanessa’s relationship

Though Kobe and Vanessa stayed together until he died, their relationship wasn’t without turmoil. From the start, they experienced adversity as Kobe’s parents didn’t approve of their marriage. They didn’t even attend his wedding.

Then, in 2003, Kobe was accused of sexually assaulting a woman in a hotel in Colorado. He admitted to cheating on Vanessa but claimed that he did not assault the woman.

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Mamba and Queen #vacai

A post shared by Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) on

“I sit here in front of you guys furious at myself, disgusted at myself for making the mistake of adultery,” Kobe said at a press conference at the Staples Center in Los Angeles after everything happened. “I love my wife with all my heart. She’s my backbone.”

The two went on to have four daughters, Natalia, Gianna, Bianka, and Capri. 

The couple did, however, hit another rough patch in 2011 and Vanessa filed for divorce, claiming that she and Kobe had irreconcilable differences. In 2013, the pair called off the divorce.

“We are pleased to announce that we have reconciled,” Vanessa wrote on Instagram, according to Entertainment Tonight. “Our divorce action will be dismissed. We are looking forward to our future together.”

Kobe and Vanessa worked together to raise their children and be as much of a normal family as possible.

“A lot of families have parents that constantly work and kids that are being raised by nannies,” a source told People. “The Bryants have always been different. The focus on family has always been a priority. Vanessa is a stay-at-home mom and after Kobe stopped playing basketball, the main focus has been about raising their daughters.”

Kobe Bryant’s emotional tribute to Vanessa

On Nov. 27, Kobe posted a picture to Instagram, reminiscing on the day that he met Vanessa and his life changed forever.

“On this day 20 years ago I met my best friend, my Queen @vanessabryant. I decided to take her on a date to Disneyland tonight to celebrate old school style (pre 4princesses) I love you my mamacita per sempre,” he wrote.

Vanessa has yet to comment on the tragedy that took place but several celebrities and athletes that were close to Kobe have sent their condolences.