Kobe Bryant memorial: Jennifer Lopez moved to tears during Vanessa’s heartbreaking tribute to Kobe and Gianna
Lopez was one among several notable celebrities in attendance and had taken to social media to share a photo of her manicure with the numbers 2 and 24 painted in gold as a tribute to Kobe and Gianna
Jennifer Lopez broke down in tears several times at the "Celebration of Life" event at the Staples Center honoring Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna.
Kobe, Gianna, and seven others died after a helicopter carrying them crashed into a mountainside in Calabasas, California, on January 26 last month, with the memorial service for the first two attracting a crowd of 20,000.
Lopez was one amongst several notable celebrities in attendance at the event and had taken to social media before going to share a photo of her manicure with the numbers #2 and #24 painted in gold as a tribute to Kobe and Gianna.
The numbers were the ones worn by the pair, and Lopez completed the post with two hearts of gold and yellow -- the colors of the Los Angeles Lakers -- in the caption.
The 50-year-old, who was with fiance Alex Rodriguez, was later seen weeping as a touching in memoriam video played on the jumbotron inside the Staples Center, lovingly referred to as 'The House that Kobe Built.'
Vanessa had spoken proudly of Gianna and told the crowd she had no doubt the teen would have gone on to become one of the greatest WNBA players of all-time, but also of how she missed her kisses, her smile, and her wit.
She had spent the second part of her speech speaking about Kobe, who she said was a sweet husband and a beautiful father, and how they had always seemed to balance each other out.
"God knew they couldn't be on this earth without each other. He had to bring them home to heaven together," Vanessa said, later adding, "I'll never get to see my baby girl walk down the aisle, have a father-daughter dance with her daddy, dance on the dance floor with me or have babies of her own."
While Lopez did not speak or perform at the memorial, she had previously penned a touching tribute for the pair that she had shared on social media.
"As I scrolled through Kobe's feed, and Alex and I talk memories and moments we remember about him ... this is the truth that rings out the loudest ... family is what matters most," she wrote at the time.
"We are all feeling sadness from this loss, but all I can think of is that it is a grain of sand compared to what Vanessa must going through right now," she continued. "I am sending all of my love and praying for you, your children and the other families involved in today’s tragic turn of events. The most unfair thing in life is to lose a child and husband on the same day. Vanessa, I pray for your strength and that God guides you each step of the way through this unimaginable heartbreak."
"Kobe you meant so much to so many and we will miss you forever. Thank you for your work ethic, your inspiration and your heart."