Gianna Bryant, who died alongside her father Kobe in a January helicopter crash, would have turned 14 on Friday

By Maria Pasquini
May 02, 2020 02:00 PM
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Jennifer Lopez, Alex Rodriguez and family with Kobe and Gianna Bryant
Jennifer Lopez/Instagram; Getty Images

Many celebrities came together to pay tribute to Gianna Bryant, in honor of what would have been her 14th birthday.

As Vanessa Bryant commemorated her late daughter’s birthday, she shared a photograph of herself wearing a red bracelet around her wrist with her daughter’s name, date of birth and Mambacita nickname on it.

“Gianna loved to wear a red bow in all of her school pictures. Red means love and life,” the mom of four explained, as she encouraged all of her fans and loved ones to “please consider wearing red” on Friday. She also implored her followers to “caption an act of kindness or show how you will play Gigi’s way since she always gave everything she did her all and led with kindness,” along with a “PlayGigisWay” hashtag.”

“Thank you. 5-1-06 Mambacita,” she wrote, noting that she was in the process of “ making this bracelet available for proceeds to benefit our Mamba and Mambacita foundation.”

Vanessa Bryant and daughters
Vanessa Bryant/Instagram

Showering Gianna with birthday love, many celebrities, who knew Gianna or were touched by her legacy, posted sweet social media tributes while wearing the special bracelet.

“Happy birthday GiGi!! We all love you so much! You always led with kindness and love. Today and everyday, thank you for inspiring us to be better,” wrote Khloé Kardashian, while sister Kim Kardashian West also shared her own commemorative post.

Jennifer Lopez and fiancé Alex Rodriguez went on to share photos of themselves and their children coming together as a family to honor Gianna. "Happy Birthday, Gigi. We miss you. You are always in our hearts,” wrote the retired baseball player. “Today we wore these red bracelets in honor of you, to symbolize love and life. I think of you, Mambacita, and your dad everyday. We love you. #PlayGigisWay.”

LeBron James, who played against Gianna’s late father Kobe Bryant, also posted a video of himself wearing the bracelet on his Instagram Story, writing “Happy Beauty-Day niece Gigi!!”

Khloé Kardashian
Khloe Kardashian/Instagram
Kim Kardashian West
Kim Kardashian/Instagram
LeBron James
Lebron James/Instagram

In a particularly poignant tribute, Robin Roberts wrote that she wore her bracelet while helping out one of her daughter’s friends, who loved basketball — just like Gianna.

“Beautiful and fitting way to say #HappyBirthdayGigi...I received a red bracelet with Gigi Bryant❤️Mambacita 5106 (her birthday) printed on it and was asked to wear it and continue Gigi’s legacy...she always gave it her all and led with kindness,” the Good Morning America co-host wrote. “Today while wearing the red bracelet I helped a friend’s 9-year-old daughter with a school project...Ellie loves to play basketball!”

Tributes also poured in from Ciara and Russell Wilson, Zendaya, Sabrina Ionescu, Carmelo Anthony, La La Anthony, Misty Copeland, Mario Lopez, soccer stars Carli Lloyd and Megan Rapinoe, as well as Kobe’s former Lakers teammate Pau Gasol, who also sent Vanessa a birthday cake for Gianna.

Zendaya
Zendaya/Instagram

For her own tribute, Vanessa shared a smiling photograph of her “sweet baby girl.”

"Happy 14th Birthday to my sweet baby girl, Gianna. Mommy loves you more than I can ever show you,” she wrote.

"You are part of MY SOUL forever. I miss you so much everyday," she said. "I wish I could wake up and have you here with me. I miss your smile, your hugs and your giggles. I miss EVERYTHING about YOU, Gigi. I LOVE YOU so much!!!!!!!"

Vanessa is also mom to daughters Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and 10-month-old Capri.

RELATED VIDEO: Kobe Bryant's Daughter Natalia, 17, Pays Tribute to Late Dad and Sister Gianna at Winter Formal

Natalia also shared an emotional tribute to her sister. "Happy 14th Birthday Gigi! ❤️" she wrote on Instagram, alongside a sweet photo that showed the two sisters hugging. "I miss your smile everyday but I know you’re always smiling down on us from heaven with daddy."

Gianna died alongside her father Kobe, 41, in a January helicopter crash. At the time, they were traveling to a youth basketball game along with parents and players from the Mamba Sports Academy girls’ team.

Last month, Gianna and her two late Mamba Academy teammates, Alyssa Altobelli and Payton Chester, were named honorary picks during the WNBA draft.