A day after he died in a helicopter crash, an old clip of star basketball player Kobe Bryant explaining why he preferred to take a chopper instead of the road is going viral.
As expected, one of the reasons Bryant said he preferred to take a chopper was because of the traffic jams in Los Angeles. But Bryant also said that using a helicopter allowed him to “focus on the craft, but still not compromise family time”.
Retired NBA player Rex Chapman shared a 2018 clip from an interview with the former Lakers’ star on The Corp With A-Rod and Big Cat. Since being tweeted the video has been viewed over 10 million times.
“I was sitting in traffic and I wound up missing a school play. This thing just kept mounting. I had to figure out a way how I can still train and focus on the craft, but still not compromise family time. That’s when I looked into helicopters, and being able to get down and back (from the arena) in 15 minutes,” Bryant said in the video.
Bryant spoke of how his wife said she could pick the kids up, but he wanted to do it so that he could spend more time with his children and not miss the important parts of their lives.
The story behind why Kobe used a private helicopter in and around Los Angeles…🖤💔🏀🌎🖤 pic.twitter.com/f77OM6CtT8
— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@RexChapman) January 27, 2020
The reason for his preference received many reactions, with people praising the reason for him choosing a chopper over the road.
As a Dad who’s constantly on the road, this hits close to home. Things as mundane as carpool are monumental – the goal being to spend as much time as possible with your kids when home. #KobeandGianna
— Webb Simpson (@webbsimpson1) January 27, 2020
Not to go to Vegas and party. Not to rub elbows with movie stars. Not to show off.
To help his wife and spend time with his kids.
— Rosco Roberts (@RoscoRoberts1) January 27, 2020
That’s pretty special. A lot of people don’t realize that even those 20 minutes in the car are priceless. Kobe got it
— Sᴛᴇᴘʜᴇɴ I. (@SIra_92) January 27, 2020
😭Seeing this makes me want to step up my game as a husband/father. Yes, we all don’t have the opportunity to have a helicopter, but we should be willing to do everything in our power to be there for our families. #MambaMentality
— JRob (@JRobles44) January 28, 2020
Loved his kids. Loved his family. That’s why I idolized him. As someone who had no parental participating – I implore you…. Participate in your kids life. Don’t be a bad parent because of your ego, your job, Your Childhood. Be like water. #BeLike #RIPKobe #RIPGiannaBryant
— Vegas ScoreBoard Express Live! (@WeBeatTheLine) January 27, 2020
True definition of Dedication. Kobe didn’t utilize the ‘free pass’ he could’ve used to excuse his absence in his children’s lives. He implemented a strategy with his wife to make sure he fulfilled his obligations as a father. This just makes it even harder to accept what happened
— ᴛᴇᴇ (@xotee510) January 27, 2020
This is amazing and hits hard. I work from home. I get up early and work while the kids are asleep so that I can take 2 hours off to have breakfast and take them to school everyday. This is the most relatable and heartbreaking part. It’s all heartbreaking but this is a jagged cut
— BS (@B_Scappini) January 27, 2020
I respect the lengths he went to in order to be a Dad and be there for his kids. So many people, professional athletes or not, let life and business get in the way of that.
— Kelly Thompson (@FantasyFballNut) January 27, 2020
— Matthew Paul (@MPSchwandt) January 27, 2020
He was a father first and foremost! God bless his wife and kids. They will pull from the love he had for them to help get through this devastating time. #RIPMamba
— Michael (@Michael_RushSr) January 27, 2020
“You don’t see your kids, so every chance I get to see them and spend time with them, even if it’s 20 mins in your car, I want that.” pic.twitter.com/6cYQKec6PQ
— أبو لارا (@HussamBukhbukh) January 27, 2020
A real family man who understood the importance of time. ❤️😢
— Kady (@kadyccox) January 27, 2020
In addition to the charismatic 41-year-old and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, three other families linked to Bryant’s Mamba Sports Academy perished on their way to a girls’ basketball tournament: a husband and wife with their 13-year-old daughter; a mother and her 13-year-old daughter; and a basketball coach who was also a mother.
The ninth victim was the pilot, Ara Zobayan, an experienced former flight instructor who was instrument-rated, or qualified to fly in fog, according to multiple media accounts.
The company that owns the chopper, Island Epress Helicopters, said the pilot had more than 10 years experience and has logged more than 8,000 flight hours. Witnesses recounted thick fog over the foothills where the helicopter went down. The fog was so bad that both the Los Angeles Police Department and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department grounded their helicopter fleets, the Los Angeles Times reported, citing officials.
(with inputs from Reuters)
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