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Following today’s unbelievable events, the writers at Phenom Media collectively reflected on the incredible life of Kobe Bryant, and his daughter Gianna; as well as honoring the deaths of the other seven passengers who passed today.

While reading these beautiful words, realize that this was the first legendary athlete our young generation had a chance to grow up with, and understand their impact to the fullest. This is in comparison with other iconic figures who tragically died in the past, and had influences we can never fully comprehend.

The following kids contributed to this article (use ctrl+f to find their name)

  • Cole Nevins
  • Shane Rich
  • Mihir Ved
  • James W
  • Michael Garrity
  • Jacob LeRea
  • Will Morris
  • Trey Wilkinson
  • Greyson Winoker
  • Derek Ross
  • Jasper Abrahams
  • Zach Goldstein
  • Kurt Zottl
  • Harris Goldstein

Now, take the time to join a reflection regarding a terrible loss:

Cole Nevins: Today’s response to Kobe’s death represents the man in a nutshell. Between his trademark mentality, and talent through his basketball career, and post-career coaching, mentorship, and incredible film work; he will never be replicated. He built Gigi into who she was becoming, and it’s tragic to think about the fact that she cannot live her life, and the Bryant family must continue on. The WNBA would have become an unbelievable, world-wide brand if Gigi was a star; and now it’s a “what-if”. Not to mention Kobe’s post-career was just getting started. He could’ve been a potential owner, legendary filmmaker and amazing philanthropist. I wish Vanessa and her daughters my condolences; I truly can’t fathom what they are going through at this moment — RIP.

Shane Rich: Kobe Bryant was not just a champion on the court, but a husband and father to a beautiful family he loved and cared for more than anything in the world. Although as I am just a fan of Kobe, I had the privilege to grow up and watch him play the sport we all love. A man who would walk into every arena with the same winning mentality, brought the intensity night in and night out. I truly loved watching him play more than anything, as his work ethic/mindset is something we can all live by and approach our everyday lives with. His impact on the game of basketball, Lakers Fans, his friends and his family will all be missed. As we mourn the loss of Kobe and his daughter Gigi, we should all be grateful we got to see the late Mr Bryant play basketball – and impact so many of our lives.

Mihir Ved: A legend, icon, one of the GOATs. That’s how I describe Kobe Bryant. From being drafted straight out of high school, to struggling his rookie season, becoming an NBA superstar, dropping 81 in a game, 60 in his final game, and shooting free throws after snapping his Achilles. All the moments he’s given us makes him the “Black Mamba”. Kobe was a relentless competitor who made everyone around him better on the court. His intensity and tenacity was something the world has never seen. Kobe was not only a NBA superstar, but an international icon. His influence on the millions across the globe from basketball to post retirement is uncharted, as well as his passion for the game and his family and his want to teach his passion for the game to his children. His presence and wisdom made fans and players want to be better in all facets of life. Only one man could make us feel such a way. Kobe was truly one a kind. May he and his daughter Gianna Rest In Peace.

James W: Kobe was one of my favorite players ever since I first started watching basketball. Although I always have been and always will be a Warriors fan, Kobe was always my favorite non-Warriors. I’ll never forget the first time I saw Kobe on TV, in real life, and the last. Much like many, I will forever say “Kobe!” when throwing away trash. Kobe Bean Bryant, another legend gone far too soon. As for Gianna, she had a whole life ahead of herself and potentially a WNBA career. She was gone far too soon. Kobe, I can’t believe this, I thought it was a joke at first. I will never forget you and what you have done for the NBA. Thank you for everything you have done. Rest In Peace, Mamba.

Michael Garrity: I want to thank you for everything you did for not only basketball, but for sports as a whole. Your relentless effort to become better in every aspect of your game was inspiring. You were a role model to a lot of people, including myself and my father. You have taught me to always go after what I want in life, no matter what it is. For that, I thank you. RIP Kobe, you will forever be remembered.

Jacob LeRea: Kobe shaped and inspired a whole generation of young basketball players. He showed sheer determination and hard work truly pays off more than anything. I have, and I will continue to live by the mindset of having a “mamba mentality” – which is more than basketball.

Will Morris: Kobe, you were an amazing player, father, and man. You made an impact on people’s lives all over the world. Everyone loves and misses you.

Trey Wilkinson: Some may not like Kobe for whatever reason they have, but you cannot deny the fact that he was (and still is) a main factor in the globalization of the game. We don’t talk enough about his post-basketball life, and all of his charity work, and the things he’s done for the community of basketball and for others as well. I didn’t get the privilege of watching prime Kobe Bryant play, but I have no doubt that this is the passing of a legend. Long live the Mamba!

Greyson Winoker: Thank you for everything you did for the game of basketball Kobe. The game was changed forever by you and it sucks that the youngest generation of ballers won’t understand how great it was to watch you play. Mamba Mentality.

Derek Ross: Kobe. Whether it was with 8 or 24, you brought a new sense to the game of basketball that no one else ever has or will. You were an icon to many young fans and were looked up to by many, including myself. Your game was poetry in motion. The Mamba Mentality is what set you apart from other superstars and your dedication to the game will be remembered forever. Rest easy, Kobe.

Jasper Abrahams: I always looked up to Kobe and always will.  He was a hero to me, my friends and my family throughout his career.  We are deeply saddened by his loss and words will never appropriately describe how we all feel. Kobe, thank you for your leadership and inspiration. May you Rest In Peace on the hardwood floor of heaven.

Zach Goldstein: Kobe Bryant was more than just a basketball player, he was a legend. He was such a hard worker, and because of that he was an inspiration to me and so many others. Thank you Kobe for what you did on and off the court.

Kurt Zottl: Kobe Bryant was more than a great basketball player. He was a great man. A man who cared about his family, a man who had a mamba mentality. RIP to Kobe Bryant, you will forever be a legend. #8 #24

Harris Goldstein: The amount of lives you have impacted, including my own, is incredible. Not only did you have an impact on the game of basketball, but on all sports world wide. Your drive to improve and win inspired so many others to do the same. I remember watching you play the Nets, and the dunk you had over Wallace and Humphries. And that was just a fraction of your greatness. Thank you for everything you have done for this world, you will be missed by many. Rest easy.