Kobe Bryant memorial: Tearful Vanessa pays tribute to Gianna, 'I won't be able to see her walk down the aisle'
Vanessa Bryant shared memories of her daughter Gianna, of who she was and what her dreams and hopes were as a 13-year-old and also shared the things that she wouldn't get to do with her daughter in an emotional memorial.
Vanessa Bryant was welcomed on stage by Jimmy Kimmel and a loud chorus of "Kobe" and "we love you". She started by thanking fans all over at the public memorial held at the Staples Center on Monday.
"I'd like to talk about both Kobe and Gigi. I'll start with my baby girl Gianna Bryant," Vanessa said as she began her moving eulogy.
She started by explaining how her daughter was one of her best friends and as she remembered many myriad things about Gianna, including how she would kiss her mother goodnight every night, how she made Kobe's birthday cake that looked like it was baked by a professional and spoke about her hopes and dreams.
Gianna would have graduated eighth grade and entered the same high school as her sister Natalia and while she may not be here to follow her sister, she was happy to know that she was accepted into the same high school as her sister made her happy said Vanessa at the memorial.
"I miss her kisses, I miss her smile, her wit," she said, and went on to list the many things that she wouldn't be able to see her daughter do. "We didn't get a chance to teach her how to drive... I won't be able to tell her how gorgeous she looks on her wedding day. I won't be able to see her walk down the aisle. I won't be able to see her do the father-daughter dance."
She also added, "She would have made a huge difference in women's basketball." Vanessa said that Gianna made a difference in the lives of people whom she met in the 13 years that she has been with us. "She was a beautiful, kind, happy, silly, thoughtful loving daughter and sister. She was so full of life and had so much to offer this world."
Vanessa also felt that Gianna would have been "an amazing mommy". She explained that Gianna was maternal and would care for people around her. Vanessa was in tears by the end of it and took a deep breath before she shared memories of her "soulmate" Kobe Bryant.
The "Celebration of Life" memorial service in honor of Kobe and Gianna is held at LA Staples Center on February 24.