On Sunday afternoon, I went to see a documentary about a journalist and her Doctor husband in Aleppo. As Janie put it, not the lightest fair for a weekend afternoon. When I returned home, my Husband asked how it was.

“Interesting…yet depressing” I remarked as I hung up my scarf and coat.

“Well…it’s not getting better.” He started. “Did you hear about Kobe?”

“No….” I said

“Dead”

I took in way more air than any intake of breath should. “What, how…”

“Helicopter crash…”

And I sat in my favorite brown chair, it bringing me no comfort that day,  I looked at the ESPN laden TV and just stared.

What was it about this death that just floored us? My Mom called, friends texted, daughter sent me a sad face…

I remembered hearing about him as a high school phenom, taking Brandy to his prom. The story of why he was named Kobe. His career.

I debated whether I wanted to write about him. Along with the accolades, there were also other things in his life… do I write about someone who may or may not have done something (and for the record- unless you were in the room that day, I don’t want opinions on what happened)

So I debated….do I write about someone who had controversy along with his name?

Then I thought about how I would want to be remembered. Would I want to be remembered for the worst thing I ever did? The stupidest? And believe me, I have made some very bad mistakes in my life. Conversely, would I want to be remembered by the very best things that I did? Those stand out moments?

Do I want to be remembered by the outliers?

No.

I do not want to be remembered by the things that I did that were on the opposite ends of the good/bad scale.

I want to be remembered for the aggregate. I want to be remembered for how I acted the vast majority of the time- That I was mainly a good person, who was flawed, as all of us are, but on the whole, I did more good than bad.

And that is how I choose to remember Kobe.

Intellect. Athlete. Competitor. Father. Girldad.

Because at the end of the day, a couple of parents and coaches, and some amazing children were lost in a tragic accident while on their way to a youth sporting event.

Just parents taking their kids to their game…

As many of us have done, or still do…

That is what I will remember…

That is what I will mourn…

 

27 thoughts on “24

  1. While I understand why many people are in deep mourning for Kobe, I never have had any interest in basketball so while I’m sorry about the circumstances of his death, and that of his daughter, I don’t feel a thing about it. That’s where I’ve found myself on this topic, which has been an insight for me about me.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Just like Kobe, those who suffered and died in Syria, Iraq, China and elsewhere in areas that don’t get the coverage, we all must remember they are all just like each of us. They all bleed red blood, have families, and try to protect what little or lot that they have, and in the end die.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. In this time of #metoo, I’ve been wondering why no one is talking about that part of his life. You’ve done a good job of putting it into perspective because as you’ve said, we’ve all made mistakes and would like to be known for more than that. He seems to have inspired many people, even outside of basketball.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I want to acknowledge your diplomacy on this topic LA. It is one that I am marking cautiously at best. A basketball legend and his daughter gone tragically, and then the other side…
    My heart, and those of many I know who consider themselves survivors should not be made silent or told to forget their individual trauma, but I also have to acknowledge just how little I know about this man, or his past.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I think we would generally like to remember people for all the good they have done but for me at times, I can’t just dismiss that one bad thing. However, I do believe one does make mistakes and if they have learned from them, why not just move on. I am not living in their lives so I don’t want to judge anyone anymore, unless of course they hurt people intentionally, but even then I have to question “why”. Life is crazy. I remember when Princess Diana died and Aaliyah., I was balling. Crazy how these people didn’t know us but they still left us with a great impressions.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I couldn’t find a way in when trying to begin a post about last Sunday so I left it be. From a basketball perspective, I grew up in the time of Jordan and Magic and those were my guys. Kobe was a brash, cocky kid who became a legend on the court and while I had nothing but respect for his game, I always considered Michael to be on a different stratosphere from anybody else. And the legacy is complicated because of Colorado. Which cannot be tucked away if we’re discussing the entire life of this individual.

    But of course, last Sunday wasn’t about basketball. It was about nine dead. Nine lives that had too much life ahead of them to be gone so tragically. And yes, it hurts to think that Kobe had become this Renaissance man in his life after basketball. And yes, the world lost decades worth of what came next. But I shudder at the thought of what those people must have gone through, and how as parents they simply wanted to make sure their kids would be alright.

    You wrote a wonderful piece here, LA, and it’s very much appreciated.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. The tragedy of nine lives lost was newsworthy because of Kobe. He was a fantastic player whose mark on the game will not be forgotten and I find it incredibly sad that parents and children were taken and the grief that the surviving family members have to endure. Nothing that has been said can take that away, that being said I am also incredibly angry that the helicopter went up at all. He had a special permit to fly when others were grounded because of the weather, taking chances with your life is one thing but including your children and lives of your friends is not to be taken lightly. Kobe will be mourned, rightfully so as will all the others that were on board that day and my heart breaks for their families.

    Liked by 1 person

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