BASKETBALL SUPERSTAR KOBE BRYANT
THE FINAL 40 MINUTES
9:06 a.m. — The Sikorsky S-76B helicopter with Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and six other passengers takes off from John Wayne Airport in Orange County. They are on their way to attend a basketball game 50 miles north of L.A.
9:20 a.m. — The helicopter is in some kind of trouble and circles the Burbank Airport for 15 minutes.
9:40 a.m. — Air traffic controller instructs the pilot Ara Zobayan to “go around.”
9:44 a.m. — The landing is cancelled due to fog and low visibility. The pilot advises the tower he is climbing to avoid the clouds.
The helicopter suddenly goes into a descent, flying at 184 mph and dropping at more than 4,000 feet per minute.
9:45 a.m. — Radar contact with the helicopter is lost. Two minutes later someone on the ground calls 911 to report the crash. The helicopter had slammed into a fog-covered mountain near Malibu Creek.
Daily Mail graphic
The chopper went down in Calabasas, 30 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles and 17 miles from its destination, the Mamba Sports Academy, killing Kobe, 41, Gianna, the pilot and six other passengers.
The nine victims aboard likely “didn’t suffer,” an eyewitness to the crash said, because the helicopter was destroyed instantaneously.
Photos: Daily Mail
DEPUTIES ON HORSEBACK AT SCENE
ATTENDED MASS BEFORE BOARDING CHOPPER
Kobe and Gianna went to church less than three hours before the accident, attending the 7 a.m. Catholic Mass and receiving Communion at the Cathedral of Our Lady Queen of the Angels in Newport Beach.
After leaving the church, father and daughter boarded the helicopter at 9:06 a.m. with the other passengers at John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana.
Forty minutes later, they died together.
THE OTHER PASSENGERS KILLED
John Altobelli 56, longtime head coach of Southern California’s Orange Coast College baseball team, his wife, Keri and daughter Alyssa, who played on the same basketball team as Gianna.
Another young player, Payton Chester, her mother Sarah Chester, and Christina Mauser, a girls basketball coach at a nearby private elementary school.
COMPLETE DAILY MAIL STORY HERE
CHOPPER WAS 30 FEET FROM SAFETY