Press Release
January 27, 2020

Statement of Senator Joel Villanueva on the demise of basketball superstar Kobe Bryant

We join the sporting community in mourning the untimely demise of Kobe Bryant, who passed away in a helicopter crash this morning with his daughter Gigi and seven others.

We remember his intensity and passion for the game, which he is instilling in his daughter and this generation. Kobe's life and work ethic is a rare phenomenon in the sport. Regardless of the team we root for, we have nothing but admiration for someone who elevated the sport in more ways than one. As a Celtics fan, we used to be on the receiving end of Kobe's Mamba Mentality, but there is no denying of his place in the Hall of Fame. His greatness transcends time, and he will always be remembered.

Kobe's life is also a reminder for us to put our complete trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. In perhaps one of his harshest episodes in his life, he held on to his faith. He fondly recalled a talk with his spiritual adviser who said: "'God's not going to give you anything you can't handle, and it's in his hands now. This is something you can't control. So let it go.'"

May God's healing hands comfort the bereaved family of Kobe Bryant in these trying times.

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