Vanessa Bryant requests to keep tribute items left by Kobe Bryant fans at the Staples Center
Vanessa Bryant wants to remember some of the tributes left at the Staples Center by fans of her late husband, Kobe Bryant, and daughter, Gianna.
Almost a week after the tragic crash that took the lives of Kobe, Gianna, and seven others, ET has learned that Vanessa personally requested that some mementos left at the makeshift memorial site -- including hats, T-shirts, paintings and basketballs -- be given to the Bryant family.
“Vanessa had reached out to us and said, ‘Our family would like the items out there.’ So we’re going to catalog every one of them," Lee Zeidman, the president of the Staples Center, told the Los Angeles Times. "By that I mean, T-shirts, letters, basketballs, stuffed animals, toys. We’re going to put those in specially made containers and we’re going to ship them to the family.”
Anything left over, like flowers, will be composted and spread around the city -- an idea they got from England’s Manchester Arena following the horrific 2017 bombing at an Ariana Grande concert.
We began the cleanup at 4am @LALIVE XBox Plaza and we have now boxed 1353 basketballs dedicated to Kobe and Gianna. Truly amazing the outpouring of love from the City of Angels in honor of the 9 who lost their lives 1/26/20 pic.twitter.com/MUN21LNupH— Lee Zeidman (@LeeZeidman) February 3, 2020
Cleanup continues and we have filled a full 40 yard roll off trash bin with flowers. These we be made into mulch and spread throughout the landscaping around @LALIVE and @STAPLESCenter so that the love all of the fans brought to LA Live lives on. pic.twitter.com/kB5XlGSYw5— Lee Zeidman (@LeeZeidman) February 3, 2020
The popular venue is attempting to get back to its regularly scheduled events now after fans have turned it into a shrine honoring the late LA Lakers star. The process of clearing the items away from Staples, L.A. Live and the Microsoft Theater began on Sunday night.
“Our goal is to somehow have it cleaned up as we relate to the middle of next week and we’re asking people — we’re going to put signage all around L.A. Live and Staples Center — if you still feel the need to do something, you can certainly come down here. But we hope that you wouldn’t bring any gift and flowers, but that you donate to the Mamba Foundations that they’ve already set up," Zeidman added. "Then we try to get back to whatever normalcy is around the campus.”
Kobe and Gigi were honored on Friday night at the Lakers game against the Portland Trail Blazers. Vanessa shared a touching photo from the event to her Instagram account, writing, “There is no #24without #2. ❤️#GirlDaddy #DaddysGirl#MyBabies ❤️❤️ #OurAngels#KobeandGigi.”
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