A month after Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna died tragically in a helicopter crash, thousands of fans will get a chance to say goodbye at a memorial ceremony at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Monday.
Hours before doors opened for the 1 p.m. ET memorial, fans started to gather outside the Staples Center decked out in purple, gold and black, according to the Los Angeles Times. About 20,000 people will be in attendance, including fans lucky enough to score tickets from an earlier online registration and presale, with the proceeds going to the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation, the Washington Post reports. The Post also noted that Kobe’s widow, Vanessa Bryant said the event would be a “celebration,” and not a funeral. Bryant and his daughter were buried in a private ceremony on Feb. 7.
While few details have emerged about who will be attending or speaking at the memorial, USA Today speculates that NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, Magic Johnson, Phil Jackson, Shaquille O’Neal and Jerry West are obvious candidates to say a few words. Other NBA luminaries likely to attend include LeBron James, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Michael Cooper, the entire Lakers team and Pat Riley.
The Los Angeles Times notes that a display of 33,000 roses representing each point the Laker superstar scored during his career will be on display center stage at the memorial.
The memorial starts at 1 p.m. ET and will likely last about three hours.