Without Kobe, I'm not even here posting this. I was 18 when Kobe entered the draft, became a first time Kobe fan, Laker fan, and sports fan all at once because of him in '97. Saw him play on avg 1-2x a year, then when I lived a few blocks away from Staples for 5+ years, some years 5x+. Grew up together, gave me some of my fondest sports memories growing up, and will always be sorely missed and revered.
Thank you so much Kobe, and god bless you and your family.