Barack Obama Grieves ‘Legend’ Kobe Bryant After He Dies in Helicopter Crash with His Daughter

WASHINGTON - JANUARY 25: President Barack Obama (R) poses for photographs with Kobe Bryant (L) and members of the National Basketball Association 2009 champions Los Angeles Lakers in the East Room of the White House January 25, 2010 in Washington, DC. The Lakers bested the Orlando Magic to win the NBA Finals in 2009. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Former President Barack Obama joined so many others this week in shock over the death of retired NBA player Kobe Bryant, who was
killed Sunday along with his daughter Gianna in a helicopter crash in the Los Angeles area.

“Kobe was a legend on the court and just getting started in what would have been just as meaningful a second act,” Obama tweeted later Sunday. “To lose Gianna is even more heartbreaking to us as parents.”

“Michelle and I send love and prayers to Vanessa and the entire Bryant family on an unthinkable day,” Obama continued.

His relationship with Bryant dates back years. Bryant visited Obama (a noted basketball fan) repeatedly in the White House, including in 2015 as Bryant prepared to retire from the L.A. Lakers.