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Vanessa and daughters celebrate Father's Day at Kobe Bryant's childhood home

The former Los Angeles model turned business executive posted several photos on Instagram and attended a charity opening of a mural of her former husband

Vanessa Bryant, former wife of Los Angeles Kobe Bryant and their three daughters at the NBA player's childhood home
Vanessa Bryant, former wife of Los Angeles Kobe Bryant and their three daughters at the NBA player's childhood home | Instagram

June 19, 2022 5:53pm

Updated: June 19, 2022 6:12pm

This Father’s Day Vanessa Marie Bryant and her three daughters are paying tribute to her former husband and Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant.

The point and shooting guard’s former wife, Vanessa, 40, celebrated the holiday with the couple’s three daughters by sharing an Instagram post of herself and Kobe, writing, “Happy Father's Day, baby."

The picture shows the once happy couple wearing Star Wars shirts with Kobe’s reading, “#1 Dad.”

In another post, Vanessa and her daughters Natalia, 18, Bianka Bella, 4, and Capri Kobe, 2, took another picture outside their father’s childhood home in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Vanessa shared another photo of the Lakers star playing basketball as a teen, and in another sentimental post, showed a picture of a manicure with “KOBE” spelled out on her toenails.

The former Los Angeles model turned business executive added a single red heart emoji and tagged the house simply as Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

This is the third Father’s Day that Vanessa and her daughters have had to celebrate without Kobe, who tragically died in a Calabasas, California helicopter crash in January 2020. His 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others survived.

Vanessa was in her former husband’s birthplace because she was visiting a new mural of Kobe and her daughter at a new basketball court with Nancy Lieberman's Dream Courts charity organization.

The former model wore Kobe’s Lower Merion Aces high school varsity jacket to honor his memory.

📍PHILADELPHIA📍where my husband's love for basketball all began,” Vanessa posted in a caption. “Today, in the historic Tustin Playground and thanks to the generous contributions of donors, fans, and friends, our foundation @mambamambacitasports opened 2more @dream_courts with @nlcharities, which were beautifully surrounded by the artwork of @Art_by_Ernel.”

Vanessa then talked about why she participated in the dedication to her late husband and daughter.

“I chose this location so that young people in this community may have a safe space to play with equal opportunity which was important to Kobe and Gianna,” she wrote. “We are grateful to the City of Philadelphia, @muralarts for welcoming this project and helping to make it a reality.”

Vanessa Bryant was born May 5, 1982 in Los Angeles, California and is a Latina of mixed Mexican, Irish, German and English ancestry. Her parents divorced when she was just an infant and her father moved to Baja California.

After her mother remarried Robert Laine, a co-worker for the electronics shipping she worked for, Vanessa changed her last name in 2000 from Vanessa Urbieta Cornejo to her step-father’s name and she became known as Vanessa Marie Laine.

Vanessa attended high school at Marina High School in Huntington Beach, California where she shined in theater club and as a cheerleader as a ‘Viking’ which was the school’s mascot.

In 1999, she attended a hip-hop concert at the Irvine Meadows Amphitheater. She was approached by agents for a music company to do dancing in videos and soon she was recruited by rapper Snoop Dog. Her vigilant mother chaperoned her on the shoots.

Still, it didn’t take long for Vanessa to get spotted by Kobe Bryant. The two met at a video shoot and quickly fell in love. Vanessa left high school early to finish her senior year on independent study, but she graduated with honors.

After proposing with a $4 million seven-carat diamond engagement ring, Vanessa and Kobe got married in 2001 in Dana Point, California.

She is currently helping to manage the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Foundation to offer scholarships to minority college students worldwide. She also leads the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation to help child athletes who are in need.