January 26, 2020 will be remembered forever for sports fans everywhere, and for good reason. It has been one year to the day of the tragic passing of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gigi in a helicopter crash, and the world continues to mourn the death of one of the greatest athletes in history.
Bryant's ex-teammate and dear friend Pau Gasol took to Instagram and posted an emotional message on the anniversary of Kobe and Gigi's death:
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Gasol was a member of the Los Angeles Lakers for seven seasons and was one of Bryant's closest friends, and to this day is seen regularly with Vanessa Bryant and the rest of Kobe's family. He even received the nickname “Uncle Pau.”
Gasol was there every step of the way for Kobe, and together they won a pair of titles as Pau was a dominant force down low for those Lakers teams.
Gasol mentioned his closeness with Kobe and how he was his brother through everything. Pau has taken it upon himself to be there for Vanessa and the rest of the family, and he and his wife even gave Gigi's name (Gianna) to their newborn baby girl, Elisabet, to pay tribute to them.
While the tragic loss of Bryant and the rest who were on the helicopter will never be easy to deal with, the world will always remember this date.
As Gasol put so perfectly, “Today, we honor and celebrate both of you.”