Kobe Bryant will forever be my hero

Blake Faith

I don’t think I could ever find the right words to say in this week’s column. Sunday afternoon I was on my way back from my hometown to campus when I received the news of Kobe Bryant’s death. I pulled over to three texts from my mother, brother and friend who texted me the news that my biggest personal hero passed away in a helicopter crash at the age of 41. 

I was like everyone else when they first found out the news. I was in denial. I refused to believe that a man who was going to enter the NBA Hall of Fame this summer died in a sudden crash.

I fell in love with the game of basketball at the age of five, and I didn’t start following the NBA until I was 10. When I first followed the sport, Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers became my favorite team. 

Everybody who knows the true me knows the impact Bryant has made on my life. As a kid with high-functioning Asperger’s syndrome, I was not supposed to be where I’m at today. Bryant was the biggest inspiration for me to strive to excel in every aspect of life and to work hard to achieve success. Bryant’s attention to detail and perseverance made me want to display those characteristics in my life even more so I could be a little more just like him.

So the sad, unfortunate truth is my hero and biggest inspiration, Kobe Bryant, is gone along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven other people. It seems unfair that a man who gave the NBA 20 years of excellence and has been retired for only four years is gone from the world. I remember texting a childhood friend saying that he was supposed to grow old and die, but life is unfair. 

I will continue to live my life admiring Bryant and have the Mamba Mentality to work hard and succeed. This last semester of school and to graduate is for the greatest Laker ever and my hero, Kobe Bean Bryant.

Blake Faith is a senior journalism major. He can be reached at 581-2812 or at bmfaith@eiu.edu.