April 18, 2020, is the 19th wedding anniversary of Kobe Bryant and Vanessa Bryant. The couple originally married in 2001 and were together until the former Los Angeles Lakers star died in a helicopter crash on Jan. 26 with eight others. Vanessa celebrated the anniversary without her late husband, but she paid tribute to him with several posts on Instagram.
One such example was an old video that Vanessa unearthed and posted on Saturday. A young Bryant was shown answering questions about his wife during an interview with MTV News. The date of the interview was 2001, the same year that they exchanged vows. The young Lakers star was asked how he knew that Vanessa was the one for him, and he answered by describing how she "caught his heart."
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"You know, it's hard to pinpoint what exactly makes a person the one for you, but you just know," Bryant said. "I mean, love is a funny thing. I can't explain it, and I don't understand it. But all I know is that she caught my heart. And I just knew that she was the one."
The fans watched this video on Saturday and reacted in a number of ways. Some felt it was beautiful and proclaimed: "How special that you have this. How true it all is. Sending love." Others were just heartbroken and could only react with crying emojis.
This discussion took place prior to Bryant and Vanessa bringing four daughters into the world. However, the late NBA icon revealed at the time that he had planned on raising a family with his wife. He knew that she had plenty of energy, as did he. In Bryant's opinion, this meant that they would be "two cool-a— parents."
Over the course of their 19-year marriage, Bryant and Vanessa expanded their family with daughters Natalia, Gianna, Bianka and Capri. They strived to be the parents that Bryant described and drew praise from their fans. Gianna, in particular, was believed to be the future basketball star of the family prior to her death on Jan. 26.
The WNBA was aware of this reputation, as well as Gianna's plans to play basketball professionally. The league paid tribute to her, Alyssa Altobelli and Payton Chester during the WNBA Draft on Friday night by making the 13-year-old players honorary draft picks. All three of their jerseys were also displayed during the virtual team-building event.