A public memorial for Lakers star Kobe Bryant and eight others killed in a helicopter crash will be held on Feb. 24 at Staples Center, a person with knowledge of the event confirmed to Southern California News Group.
The memorial will honor Bryant, who is best known for his 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers. Also killed in the Jan. 26 crash in Calabasas was his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna Bryant; John, Keri and Alyssa Altobelli; Sarah and Payton Chester; Christina Mauser and Ara Zobayan, who were on their way to a basketball tournament at Mamba Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks.
A public memorial has been anticipated for Bryant, whose death at 41 sent shockwaves throughout Southern California and the world. NBA players and anonymous fans alike wept openly when his death was reported on Sunday, Jan. 26, and murals and signs throughout the globe have stood as monuments to Bryant’s influence as a cultural figure. Before clearing an impromptu shrine that inhabited L.A. Live on Monday, droves of mourners had left basketballs, candles, flowers, jerseys and more outside of Staples Center, where Bryant won five NBA championships.
The memorial is set to take place on a day when the Clippers host Memphis at 7:30 p.m.. The game is expected to go on as scheduled. It will be held on a day between Lakers home games, which will be on Feb. 23 (Boston) and Feb. 25 (New Orleans).
The date has some sentimental significance taking place on 2/24, which is a combination of Gianna’s and Kobe’s jersey numbers, respectively.