FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THE WORLD HAS LOST A GREAT BASKETBALL PLAYER AND A WONDERFUL AND IMPACTFUL PERSON
Sunday, January 26, 2020
Statement By Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr.
As I write this tribute through my tears, I am so hurt. I cannot stop crying. Kobe Bryant - devoted father, NBA legend, 5-time champion, 18-time All Star, Oscar winner, children's book author, women’s basketball advocate, businessman and more - was instrumental and inspirational to so many people.
Kobe was the authentic bridge between Michael Jordan and LeBron James, the holy trinity of modern basketball. Just last night LeBron passed him as the number three all-time leading scorer in NBA history. With class and dignity, Kobe congratulated LeBron and tweeted, "Much respect my brother."
Those of us, who had the privilege of knowing Kobe, know that he led an admirable life with friends and family beyond the basketball court. Before the world can begin to comprehend the loss of this wonderful man, the soul numbing news just arrived that his precious 13-year-daughter, Gianna, was on the helicopter with him and went to heaven in her Daddy’s arms. Our hearts cannot take much more.
Kobe was a basketball phenomenon that had the skill, competitiveness, decency, dignity and excellence to play, not just above the rim, but also sometimes in the rarified air almost above the game itself. His basketball journey was a source of joy to millions of fans around the world. We are blessed to have lived in his time and place.
Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a multi-racial, multi-issue, progressive, international organization that was formed in December 1996 by the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. through merging of two organizations he founded Operation PUSH People United to Serve Humanity (estab. 1971) and the Rainbow Coalition (estab. 1984). With headquarters in Chicago and offices in Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, New York and Oakland, the organization works to make the American Dream a reality for all citizens while advocating for peace and justice around the world. RPC is dedicated to improving the lives of all people by serving as a voice for the voiceless. Its mission is to protect, defend and gain civil rights by leveling the economic and educational playing fields while promoting peace and justice around the world.