It was Sunday. Grammy Sunday. A highly anticipated day in the music industry. The world was in Los Angeles for the Grammy Awards. This year was special. Because the President of the Grammy Awards had been embroiled in a dispute that included accusations of dishonesty in the voting process (Something we all suspected anyway), rape against the former president, and other crimes and misdemeanors. The Grammy brand had no doubt been tarnished but there was still great anticipation for “Music’s Greatest Night”.
But then, Sunday morning…. Grammy Sunday morning, we all were rocked that one of the greatest stars in Los Angeles if not the world. One of the most iconic names in sports, NBA great Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and seven others had been killed in a helicopter crash north of Los Angeles.
The city, if not the world was paralyzed. The Grammy Awards was almost a non-factor. As we spent the next few days reflecting, mourning and contemplating Kobe’s impact in Los Angeles and the NBA, we began to explore his impact across the world. We locked in, of course on Africa. And wow. We did not know that Kobe was an ambassador of basketball on the continent. Much like the youth in the US, it was because of Kobe’s example of the will to win, that many young Africans picked up a basketball and began to play the sport. It was because of Kobe that young men and women began to believe that they could do anything they set their heart after and be successful. They even looked onto his daughter and noted that even though Kobe had all daughters, that Gianna was the one who stepped up and began the road in her father’s footsteps.
Here, at AfroPop Radio, step forward to extend our deepest condolences to the families of Kobe Bryant and the others involved in that tragic crash. Thank you Kobe for the memories, but more than that, thank you for caring about Mother Africa. Rest in Peace sir