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Kobe Bryant dies at age 41 in California helicopter crash

(CNN) -- Basketball legend Kobe Bryant died Sunday morning in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, sources confirm to CNN.

Bryant's daughter Gianna, 13, was also killed in the crash, sources confirm. 

Bryant, 41, and his daughter were expected at the Mamba Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks for a basketball game scheduled for noon Sunday. Gianna was expected to play in the game and Bryant was expected to coach, according to Lady Mavericks team director Evelyn Morales.

Nine people were killed in the crash on a hillside in Calabasas, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said. There were no survivors, the Los Angeles County Fire Department said. The sheriff's department received reports of the downed aircraft just after 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m PT), officials said in a tweet.

Los Angeles County Fire Department Capt. Tony Imbrenda said he didn't immediately have any information about whether the Sikorsky S-76 helicopter radioed a distress signal.

"Individuals that saw the aircraft said it was coming down at a fairly significant rate of speed and impacted the ground on the hillside," he told reporters.

Imbrenda said he didn't know where the helicopter came from or where it was headed.

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Tranportation Safety Board are investigating the crash, the FAA said in a tweet.

Pictures taken shortly after the crash showed fog in the area. Sunday morning's weather also included light wind and temperatures in the mid-50s.

Calabasas is about 30 miles west of Los Angeles.


A heralded career


Bryant's death comes a day after LeBron James passed him as No. 3 on the NBA all-time scoring list when he scored 33,643 points.

"Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother," Bryant tweeted Saturday night.

Born in Philadelphia, Bryant was drafted to the NBA straight out of Lower Merion High School near Philadelphia in 1996. He was the youngest player in NBA history at that time, at 18 years, 2 months and 11 days.

Bryant played his entire professional career with the Los Angeles Lakers and won five NBA championships.

Bryant has two Olympic gold medals for men's basketball.

Bryant retired in April 2016.


The nation mourns Bryant's death.


Everyone from current and former NBA players to the mayor of Los Angeles mourned Bryant.

"Nooooooooooo God please No!" retired NBA player Dwyane Wade tweeted at the news.

Former NBA player Scottie Pippen tweeted: "I'm stunned. Words can't even come close to describing it. Just an incredibly sad and tragic day."

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti called Bryant a "giant who inspired, amazed, and thrilled people everywhere with his incomparable skill on the court -- and awed us with his intellect and humility as a father, husband, creative genius, and ambassador for the game he loved.

"He will live forever in the heart of Los Angeles, and will be remembered through the ages as one of our greatest heroes."

President Donald Trump tweeted about Bryant's death in the crash, "That is terrible news!"

This is a developing story.

The-CNN-Wire™ & © 2020 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.

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