Entertainment Sports Beyoncé Performs Powerful Musical Tribute to Kobe Bryant at Celebration of Life "I'm here because I love Kobe and this was one of his favorite songs," Beyoncé said By Lindsay Kimble Lindsay Kimble Lindsay Kimble is a Senior Digital News Editor and the Sports Editor for PEOPLE Digital. She's worked at PEOPLE for over seven years as a writer, reporter and editor across our Entertainment, Lifestyle and News teams, covering everything from the Super Bowl to the Met Gala. She's been nominated for the ASME NEXT Awards for Journalists Under 30, and previously wrote for Us Weekly while on staff at Wenner Media. People Editorial Guidelines Published on February 24, 2020 01:40 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Kobe Bryant‘s legacy was honored with a stirring musical tribute by a musical icon on Monday during his powerful memorial at Staples Center. Beyoncé took the stage to kick off the event, wearing a yellow suit in honor of the Lakers’ color and backed by a choir clad in white suits. The singer started to perform her hit “XO,” before stopping to tell the crowd, “I’m here because I love Kobe and this was one of his favorite songs.” She then explained she was going to restart the song from the beginning, and asked the crowd to sing along. After concluding the track, Beyoncé, 38, launched into “Halo.” The singer previously honored Kobe on Instagram, writing simply, “You are deeply missed beloved Kobe.” The entire event was organized after Kobe’s death in a Jan. 26 helicopter crash alongside his daughter Gianna, 13, and seven other people. Beyoncé’s performance wasn’t the first musical tribute to the basketball icon. CNN Jennifer Hudson, 38, performed the classic “For All We Know (We May Meet Again)” at the 2020 All-Star Game earlier this month in an emotional tribute. LeBron James Spoke with Kobe Bryant Hours Before His Tragic Death: ‘I’ll Continue Your Legacy’ And at the Lakers’ first home game after Kobe’s death, Wiz Khalia and Charlie Puth did a performance of their emotional 2015 track “See You Again,” which was initially featured in the soundtrack for Furious 7as a tribute to the late actor Paul Walker. ETIENNE LAURENT/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock Monday’s event was organized, in part, by Kobe’s longtime NBA team, the Los Angeles Lakers. Shaquille O’Neal Pays Tribute to Kobe Bryant The date holds special significance for the Bryant family: Gianna wore jersey No. 2 at the Mamba Sports Academy, and Kobe wore No. 24 in the latter half of his career. 20 — as in the year 2020 — marks his time as a Laker and the length of his relationship with his wife Vanessa Bryant, with whom he shares 4 children, including Gianna.