As news of Kobe Bryant’s shocking death spread on Sunday, countless tributes poured in for the former Los Angeles Laker as people expressed their horror and sadness over the basketball great’s sudden death.
Bryant, 41, died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, along with eight others, including his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna. Bryant was married to his wife Vanessa for more than 18 years, and the two had four children.
“There’s no words to express the pain I’m going through now with this tragic and sad moment of loosing my friend, my brother, my partner in winning championships, my dude and my homie,” former teammate Shaquille O’Neal wrote on social media, alongside photos of him with Bryant.
“I love you brother and you will be missed. My condolences goes out to the Bryant family and the families of the other passengers on board. IM SICK RIGHT NOW !” he added.
Fellow NBA greats Scottie Pippen, Michael Jordan and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar also expressed their horror at Bryant’s passing.
“Words can’t even come close to describing it. Just an incredibly sad and tragic day,” Pippen tweeted.
Syracuse men’s basketball coach Jim Boeheim said Bryant was “the hardest working player I’ve ever been around.”
“I was so fortunate to have known him and coached him with Team USA,” Boeheim wrote. “Our thoughts and our prayers are with his wife, Vanessa, and the Bryant family.”
President Donald Trump and former presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton also honored the NBA star.
“Kobe was a legend on the court and just getting started in what would have been just as meaningful a second act. To lose Gianna is even more heartbreaking to us as parents,” Obama said.
“Kobe brought excitement and joy to basketball fans not just in Los Angeles, but all over the U.S. and around the world. He was also a leader off the court, including in his advocacy for young people, especially the vulnerable and homeless,” Clinton told CNN in a statement. “Kobe Bryant lived a very large life in a very short time.”
Kobe Bryant, despite being one of the truly great basketball players of all time, was just getting started in life. He loved his family so much, and had such strong passion for the future. The loss of his beautiful daughter, Gianna, makes this moment even more devastating....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 26, 2020
.....Melania and I send our warmest condolences to Vanessa and the wonderful Bryant family. May God be with you all!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 26, 2020
Kobe was a legend on the court and just getting started in what would have been just as meaningful a second act. 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.— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) January 26, 2020
Kobe Bryant was not only one of the greatest basketball players ever, he was also the hardest working player I’ve ever been around. I was so fortunate to have known him and coached him with Team USA. Our thoughts and our prayers are with his wife, Vanessa, and the Bryant family.— Jim Boeheim (@therealboeheim) January 26, 2020
Michael Jordan on the tragic passing of Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna pic.twitter.com/z0Ja0hf9QX— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) January 26, 2020
Most people will remember Kobe as the magnificent athlete who inspired a whole generation of basketball players. But I will always remember him as a man who was much more than an athlete. pic.twitter.com/9EZuwk8wrV— Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (@kaj33) January 26, 2020
Beyond devastated... my big brother... I can’t, I just can’t believe it— Pau Gasol (@paugasol) January 26, 2020
Kobe, We love you brother— ye (@kanyewest) January 26, 2020
We’re praying for your family and appreciate the life you’ve lived and all the inspiration you gave pic.twitter.com/pxbgLOOmpY
Kobe Bryant was a giant who inspired, amazed, and thrilled people everywhere with his incomparable skill on the court — and awed us with his intellect and humility as a father, husband, creative genius, and ambassador for the game he loved. pic.twitter.com/hkb0lbRwie— Mayor Eric Garcetti (@MayorOfLA) January 26, 2020
Kobe will live forever in the heart of Los Angeles, and will be remembered through the ages as one of our greatest heroes.— Mayor Eric Garcetti (@MayorOfLA) January 26, 2020
This is a moment that leaves us struggling to find words that express the magnitude of shock and sorrow we are all feeling right now, and I am keeping Kobe’s entire family in my prayers at this time of unimaginable grief.— Mayor Eric Garcetti (@MayorOfLA) January 26, 2020
Kobe and I shared so many special conversations about life and basketball. We had so much in common off the court. I used to love talking to him about Lakers basketball, being fathers and husbands and how much we loved Italy. I will miss those conversations and him so much. pic.twitter.com/PIv7obzr2x— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) January 26, 2020
Damn. RIP Mamba. May your memory be a blessing— Mark Cuban (@mcuban) January 26, 2020
I’m stunned. Words can’t even come close to describing it. Just an incredibly sad and tragic day.— Scottie Pippen (@ScottiePippen) January 26, 2020
Can’t be true.— JJ Watt (@JJWatt) January 26, 2020
Just can’t be.
Truly truly horrific.
Rest In Peace Kobe.
The Orlando Magic is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Kobe Bryant. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Bryant family, the L.A. Lakers and the other victims of today’s tragedy and their families.— Orlando Magic (@OrlandoMagic) January 26, 2020
We will observe a moment of silence before tonight’s game.#RIPMAMBA pic.twitter.com/VwMzx4AKy5
Today we mourn the loss of our friend Kobe Bryant. Sending our thoughts and prayers to the Bryant family. ♥️ pic.twitter.com/fwT4yj7Ud7— Sesame Street (@sesamestreet) January 26, 2020
Shocked and saddened to hear about Kobe Bryant. To us in Philly he was one of ours. His loss will be felt throughout the city. #ripkobe— M. Night Shyamalan (@MNightShyamalan) January 26, 2020
Just got the AWFUL news about Kobe..... Man!!!!! I’m speechless.— ICE T (@FINALLEVEL) January 26, 2020
Bruce and I are heartsick for Vanessa Bryant, the entire Bryant family, and the family and friends of those killed in the crash. We grieve with you. America, hold your children close and tell your loved ones how much you care.— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) January 26, 2020
😢😢😢😢😢 Kobe this cant be real!!!— Meek Mill (@MeekMill) January 26, 2020
Literally this morning you reached out to me ....😔 I love you forever unc❤️ I love you pic.twitter.com/3oVgvKKUkm— Shareef O’Neal (@SSJreef) January 26, 2020
I wonder if you would join me in embracing Vanessa Bryant.— Be A King (@BerniceKing) January 26, 2020
Even though we’re not with her, Love travels and is transcendent. pic.twitter.com/gQfenBgoM8
Everyone at our show is so saddened & shocked over the passing of Kobe Bryant. He was a father, husband, author, incredible athlete & one of the kindest guests we’ve had on our show. Please keep his family in your thoughts & remember to cherish the ones you love every single day pic.twitter.com/841PYJlvtq— The Kelly Clarkson Show (@KellyClarksonTV) January 26, 2020
R.I.P. Kobe Bryant this is so sad I can’t believe it— juicy j (@therealjuicyj) January 26, 2020
San Antonio @spurs coach Gregg Popovich, whose teams squared off against Kobe Bryant in the @NBA playoffs numerous times, remembers the Los Angeles @Lakers legend:— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) January 27, 2020
"All of us know what a great player he was, but he went beyond great playing." https://t.co/CeOTPJagvH pic.twitter.com/tHQFhG1PC8
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver issued the following statement today regarding the passing of Kobe Bryant pic.twitter.com/P88GwIwmYV— NBA (@NBA) January 26, 2020
So awful. 41 years old.— Jon Cryer (@MrJonCryer) January 26, 2020
My condolences go out to the families of Kobe Bryant and all those aboard. https://t.co/wJYVMKDwjn
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost.