Kobe Bryant played mostly at shooting guard and he is considered among the best players in NBA history. Son of Joe Bryant and grandson on his mother's side of Chubby Cox, both former basketball players, Bryant grew up basketball in Italy, where he learned the European fundamentals, and played his entire professional career in the Los Angeles Lakers, winning 5 titles. He was also the first NBA player to serve on the same team for twenty seasons. With the US national team he participated in the 2007 FIBA Americas Championship and the Olympic Games in Beijing 2008 and London 2012, winning the gold medal in all three events. On March 4, 2018 he won the Academy Award together with director and animator Glen Keane, in the category of best animated short film for Dear Basketball, which he wrote inspired by his farewell letter to basketball.
He is one of the best known sportsmen in the world and his career is considered one of the best in the history of professional sport. On April 4, 2020, he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. At 9:06 am PDT on January 26, 2020, Bryant, his thirteen-year-old daughter Gianna, and seven others took off from Orange-John Wayne County Airport in California aboard Sikorsky S-76B helicopter registrations N72EX owned by of the player. The aircraft crashed in Calabasas at approximately 9:47 am, catching fire. On February 7, a strictly private funeral was held at Pacific View Memorial Park in Corona del Mar, California, after which Bryant and his daughter were buried.