Jessica Simpson shares photo taken just after Kobe Bryant crash: 'We could see the emergency helicopters'


Jessica Simpson has shared a powerful tribute to Kobe Bryant, including a photo taken just minutes after his death.

The image, posted to Instagram on Monday, came just one day after Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, Calif. Simpson, who lives one city over in Hidden Hills, said the photo was taken by her husband, former NFL player Eric Johnson, in the couple's backyard.

"Eric took this photo from our backyard right after the accident happened where Kobe, his daughter, and other beautiful souls were lifted up to be with God for eternity," Simpson captioned the image. "We could see the emergency helicopters flying over our house and I felt the loss."

"My heart is completely broken for all the families and loved ones left behind trying to make sense of things in this tragic moment," Simpson added.

Simpson, 39, also used her post to offer condolences to Bryant's wife, Vanessa, who she called "the woman and wife that championed [her] husband to greatness." The couple married in 2001 and had four children together, Gianna, 17-year-old Natalia, 3-year-old Bianka and 7-month-old Capri.

The other seven victims in the crash included Gianna's basketball teammate, Alyssa Altobelli, as well as her parents, John and Keri. One of the girls' coaches, Christina Mauser, was also on board, as was another teammate Payton Chester and her mother Sarah. The helicopter's pilot, Ara Zobayan also died in the crash.

Bryant, a five-time NBA champion, Academy Award winner and soon-to-be NBA hall of famer, has been honored through countless tributes in the days following his death. Several NBA stars, professional tennis players and musicians at the 2020 Grammy Awards — which took place the same day as the crash — used their platforms to discuss the impact the 41-year-old left behind.