In the wake of protests across the U.S. following the death of George Floyd at the hands of a police officer, some demonstrators have defaced or destroyed property but some murals and artwork of Kobe Bryant and daughter Gigi have remained untouched, says Vanessa Bryant.
The 38-year-old wife of the late basketball champion took to social media on Monday and shared several murals of Kobe and Gigi that have not been damaged. The murals were installed after the tragic deaths of the former Los Angeles Lakers legend and his daughter in a helicopter crash this year.
Sharing one of the murals that showed Kobe and Gigi after he won a championship, Vanessa wrote “Kobe and Gigi untouched. LA.”
Alongside another that showed Gigi on her dad’s shoulders, she wrote: “Kobe and Gigi mural saved, LA.”
She further noted how a mural of Kobe and 17-year-old daughter Natalia had been “saved” from defacing.
Over 9,000 people have been arrested amid protests that began last week after the death of Floyd. The 46-year-old died after white police officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for several minutes as he yelled: “I can’t breathe.”
Reports said the officers responded to a call from a grocery store that claimed Floyd had used a forged cheque. His death, however, is just one example of the ongoing systemic racism in America where black people find themselves being killed during encounters with white police officers.
Days before sharing the untouched murals of her husband Kobe, Vanessa spoke out about the ongoing protest following Floyd’s death. She posted an image of Kobe wearing a black T-shirt that included the phrase “I can’t breathe,” which is what Floyd said moments before he died.
“My husband wore this shirt years ago and yet here we are again.💔#ICANTBREATHE,” Vanessa wrote on Sunday, May 31. “Life is so fragile. Life is so unpredictable. Life is too short. Let’s share and embrace the beautiful qualities and similarities we all share as people.”
“Drive out hate. Teach respect and love for all at home and school. Spread LOVE. Fight for change- register to VOTE. Do not use innocent lives lost as an excuse to loot. BE AN EXAMPLE OF THE CHANGE WE WANT TO SEE. #BLACKLIVESMATTER ❤️.”