You probably know by now that Kobe Bryant has died in a tragic helicopter crash. Even more sadly, it appears his teen daughter did as well and they were on the way to some kind of basketball event with another parent and daughter, and, of course, the pilot. All are dead.
The facts are young, and the reportage heavy. Bryant has long had a personal Sikorsky helicopter, a fairly stable platform as to airworthiness, and it is apparently confirmed it was indeed a Sikorsky S-76 involved. We shall see what the longer term NTSA investigation produces. There was apparently bad weather, but not so much that flight was prohibited, and where it occurred is within a tightly terminal controlled airspace, so it was perceived to be okay.
Here is the thing. Most of you, I guess, were not here when we started this here gig. There was a precursor blog known as The Next Hurrah, but it then morphed into the “Emptywheel” blog you now know and enjoy. But Emptywheel, as you know it, started out as a part at a group blog known as Firedoglake, operated by Jane Hamsher.
The “Lake” was the Lakers, the “Dog” was Jane’s giant poodle “Kobe” and the “Fire” was by the TV she watched the Lakers on religiously. I may not have all of that perfect, but close enough.
Whether you love him or hate him, Kobe was one of the greatest players in the history of sports, and one of the fiercest competitors ever. And he was on a path to doing significant good after his retirement. The loss of his teenage daughter, thirteen years old, Gianna, is even more tragic. She was the next generation that will never get the opportunity to blossom.
This is a sad day for sports, and a sad day for the history of this blog. RIP.