Kobe Bryant & Wife Vanessa Had Pact To ‘Never Fly On A Helicopter Together’ Says Source, Kobe Only Few On Helicopter With Pilot Ara Zobayan
Kobe Bryant’s tragic helicopter death sent the world into a whirlwind. The NBA great and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna Bryant, died Sunday (Jan. 26) after a fatal crash that also killed seven others.
Now, new reports have come out that Kobe Bryant and his wife Vanessa Bryant vowed to never ride in a helicopter together.
An insider told PEOPLE Monday (Jan. 27),
“He and Vanessa had a deal that they would never fly on a helicopter together.”
It’s not clear why the couple would have a vow like that. Along with Gianna Bryant, the two shared three daughters: Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri Kobe, 7 months.
Kobe Bryant also reportedly only flew on the helicopter if pilot Ara Zobayan was flying it. Unfortunately, Ara Zobayan was also among the nine victims who died from the crash.
Before the heartbreaking crash, Kobe Bryant explained why he opted for helicopters as his form of transportation.
“…After-school activities and all that fun stuff, even on weekends. But then traffic started getting really, really bad, right? I was sitting in traffic and I wind up missing a school play because I was sitting in traffic. I had to figure out a way where I could still train and focus on the craft, but still not compromise family time. And so that’s when I looked into helicopters… And to be able to get down and back in 15 minutes, and that’s when it started.”
“My routine was always the same. Weights early in the morning, kids to school, fly down, practice like crazy, do my extra work, media, everything I needed to do, fly back, get back in the carpool line and pick the kids up.”
“My wife was like ‘Listen, I can pick them up.’ I’m like ‘No, no, no. I wanna do that because you have road trips and times you don’t see your kids. So every chance I get to see them and spend time with them, even if it was 20 minutes in the car, I want that.”
News of the crash scoured headlines Sunday (Jan. 26). The nine passengers were heading to a travel game when the plane crashed in Calabasas, Calif. An investigation has been launched to look into the crash, but according to reports, there were very foggy conditions at the time of the crash. Along with Kobe and Gianna Bryant, the other passengers were: Gianna’s Mamba Academy teammates Alyssa Altobelli and Payton Chester; their parents, John and Keri Altobelli, and Sarah Chester; and assistant coach Christina Mauser.
Continued prayers for all families impacted by this tragedy.