Vanessa Bryant wishes daughter Natalia a happy 20th birthday… days before the three-year anniversary of husband Kobe Bryant’s death
Vanessa Bryant and the firstborn daughter of the late NBA star Kobe Bryant, Natalia Bryant, celebrated her birthday on Thursday.
The mother of three, 40, who lost daughter Gianna Bryant along with her husband in a 2020 helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, took to Instagram to wish her eldest child a happy 20th birthday.
‘Welcome to your twenties!!! We love you so much baby!!!’ wrote the philanthropist in an emphatically excited caption.
Birthday Tribute: Vanessa Bryant and the late NBA star Kobe Bryant’s firstborn daughter, Natalia Bryant, celebrated her birthday on Thursday
Vanessa, who married Kobe in 2001, uploaded three solo snaps of her daughter and began the caption: “Happy 20th birthday @nataliabryant!!!”
The proud and protective mother bear shared a portrait photo of Natalia who attended the premiere of Babylon last month in a brown one-shoulder dress.
She also included a close-up of the young beauty in a pink sweater and her hair in loose waves with accent braids.
The latest in the trio of photos was a holiday snap that showed Natalia relaxing on a yacht with sunglasses on her face.
Proud mom: Vanessa took to Instagram to wish her oldest child a happy 20th birthday
Natalia’s birthday comes before the upcoming three-year anniversary of the shocking deaths of her father and sister.
The former five-time Lakers champion passed away at age 41 and his second daughter Gigi was just 13.
Six other passengers and a pilot also died when their plane crashed into the side of a hill near Calabasas, California, on January 26, 2020.
In addition to Vanessa and Natalia, Kobe left behind two younger daughters: Bianka, six, and Capri, three.
Since the loss of their two relatives, Vanessa and Natalia have remained close and share a close bond.
Gushing: ‘Welcome to your twenties!!! We love you so much baby!!!’ wrote the philanthropist in an emphatically excited caption
Vanessa spoke about her grieving process by focusing on her daughters during a 2021 interview with People.
In the conversation, she said she was ‘extremely proud of Natalia’, whom she described as her ‘right hand’.
She also said she took on the role of comforter with her daughters after the tragic losses of Kobe and Gianna.
“It is important to me to help my girls through this grief. Making sure they know they are loved, supported and important is what motivates me,” she noted.
Unbreakable: Ever since the loss of their two relatives, Vanessa and Natalia have remained close and bonded; pictured at a Baby 2 Baby charity event in December 2022
The Early Years: Vanessa and Kobe started their family with the birth of Natalia in 2003
Last August, a jury awarded Vanessa Bryant $16 million in damages after Kobe’s body was photographed by officials.
The jury found that sheriff’s deputies and firefighters rushing to the scene of the January 2020 accident illegally took photographs of the carnage, including the mutilated remains of the basketball legend and his daughter.
The sheriff’s department was ordered to pay Bryant $2.5 million for past emotional distress and $7.5 million for future suffering.
The fire department must pay her $1 million for past suffering and $5 million for future suffering.
Family of six: Vanessa and Kobe posed with their four daughters Natalia, Gianna, Bianka and Capri in 2019