About one month ago, on January 26th, there was a fatal helicopter crash in Calabasas, that included NBA legend, Kobe Bryant, as well as his 13 year daughter, Gianna Bryant. The crash also killed seven others: Alyssa Altobelli, John Altobelli, Keri Altobelli, Payton Chester, Sarah Chester, Christina Mauser, and helicopter pilot, Ara Zobayan.
Since The Staples Center was known as “the house that Kobe built”, the same day that the news was released, Kobe fans went to pay their respect at the popular arena. One Twitter user captured the touching tribute on video, the day after the crash.
Kobe Bryant’s wife, Vanessa Bryant, so graciously released an Instagram post about two weeks ago, stating that there will be a public memorial service held in honor of Kobe, GiGi, and the seven others that tragically lost their lives in the crash.
According to the Staples Center, 20,000 tickets were released through Ticketmaster. Ticketmaster wanted to make sure that everyone had a fair chance of obtaining tickets, instead of bots or second hand companies. So, before being able to buy a ticket to the memorial, you would’ve had to have signed up for Ticketmaster’s Verified Fan program.
However, there were some complications and confusion, according to many fans trying to buy the tickets. Ticketmaster responded to their many questions/concerns in a statement on February 21st: “There has been an outpouring of love and support from hundreds of thousands of fans around the world hoping to attend A Celebration of Life for Kobe and Gianna Bryant on February 24th. This has naturally led to Verified Fan registrations far exceeding ticket supply. Those registered and verified have been randomly selected to receive confirmation codes for a chance to purchase tickets. All other fans received a waitlist notification and will be contacted should tickets become available. All proceeds will be donated directly to the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation, whose mission is to further Kobe and Gianna Bryant’s legacy in youth sports.”
Many fans were still upset and angered that they weren’t able to purchase tickets, but those who have tickets are able to attend the memorial service today. Please read below for the details.
Where: The Staples Center
When: Monday, February 24. Doors open at 8 am PST, and the event begins at 10 am.
The Staples Center released a statement through Twitter, urging fans to please stay away from the center if you do not have a ticket to enter. They are, however, providing all fans with the opportunity to watch the full service from the comfort of their own home.
You can watch the full memorial live, through various platforms. CBSN will be the livestreaming the full event, as will The Lakers, on their Facebook, Twitter, Website, and Spectrum Sportsnet pages. As for television viewings, you can watch the service live by tuning into ABC7.
Our heavy hearts go out to the Bryant family at this time.