Vanessa Bryant pays touching tribute to Kobe on wedding anniversary

Vanessa and Kobe Bryant (Getty Images)
Vanessa and Kobe Bryant (Getty Images)

Vanessa Bryant celebrated the 19th anniversary of her wedding to her late husband Kobe Bryant on Saturday with a touching Instagram post.

"My king, my heart, my best friend. Happy 19th wedding anniversary. I miss you so much. I wish you were here to hold me in your arms. I love you," she wrote, posting a picture of the couple.

Five-time NBA champion Bryant and the couple's 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, were among nine people killed in a helicopter crash in Los Angeles on 26 January.

Gianna, along with her basketball team-mates Payton Chester and Alyssa Altobelli, who also died in the crash, were honoured at Friday's WNBA draft as honourary selections.

Vanessa Bryant recorded an emotional message for the draft broadcast, saying being drafted into the women's league "would have been a dream come true" for Gianna.

After the conclusion of the draft on Friday night, the WNBA announced the creation of the Kobe & Gigi Bryant WNBA Advocacy Award, given to "an individual or group who has made significant contributions to the visibility, perception and advancement of women's and girls' basketball at all levels."

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