“I apologized to her in private earlier today, not to the public,” the 33-year-old wrote via Twitter on Tuesday, February 23. “Nothing I say on my [Twitter] page [is] directed to an internet viral moment or the family of a grieving woman! If you care about someone grieving, change the subject!”
On February 22, the 38-year-old put the rapper on blast via her Instagram Story. “Dear Meek Mill, I find this line to be extremely insensitive and disrespectful. Period,” she wrote, tagging him in the message. “I am not familiar with any of your music, but I believe you can do better than this. If you are a fan, fine, there’s a better way to show your admiration for my husband. This lacks respect and tact.”
The widow of the Los Angeles Lakers star spoke out following a social media outcry over the weekend. She responded to the Grammy-nominated rapper about an unreleased collaboration with Lil Baby that leaked online, allegedly titled “Don’t Worry (RIP Kobe).” The line in question reads: “Yeah, and if I ever lack, I’m goin’ out with my chopper, it be another Kobe.”
According to the Daily Mail, Meek seemingly responded in a now-deleted tweet before apologizing. “I’m going back savage in this s*** … f#%k ya feelings!” he said. In another message, he wrote, “I don’t think we on the same signal y’all … I don’t see what y’all see.”
On January 26, 2020, Kobe, his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven other victims died in a private helicopter crash in Calabasas, California. The group was traveling from Orange County to Thousand Oaks for basketball practice at Bryant’s Mamba Academy, but they didn’t make it to their final destination.
“We know the helicopter was at 2,300 feet before it lost communication with Air Traffic control,” National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) member Jennifer Homendy said in a press conference days after the crash. “The descent rate of the helicopter was over 2,000 feet per minute. So, we know this was a high-energy impact crash.”
In February 2021, over a year after the tragedy, the NTSB primarily blamed pilot Ara Zobayan for the crash.
Zobayan, an experienced pilot, ignored his training, violated flight rules by flying into conditions where he couldn’t see and failed to take alternate measures, such as slowing down and landing or switching to auto-pilot, which would have averted the tragedy.
The NTSB said it was likely Zobayan felt pressure to deliver his star client to his daughter’s game. Officials believe Zobayan may have also felt “continuation bias,” an unconscious tendency among pilots to stick with the original plan despite changing conditions.
“The closer you get to the destination, the more you think just maybe you can pull this off,” NTSB Vice Chairman Bruce Landsberg said on Tuesday, February 9.
The agency announced the long-awaited findings during a four-hour hearing pinpointing probable causes of what went awry in the 40-minute flight. The crash led to widespread public mourning for the retired basketball star and several lawsuits, as well as prompted state and federal legislation.
The basketball legend married Vanessa in April 2001, and they shared daughters Gianna Maria-Onore, Natalia Diamante, 18, Bianka Bella, 4, and Capri Kobe, 20 months.
Vanessa observed the first anniversary of Kobe and Gianna’s deaths last month, writing on Instagram, “I miss my baby girl and Kob-Kob so much, too. I will never understand why/how this tragedy could’ve happened to such beautiful, kind and amazing human beings. It still doesn’t seem real. Kob, we did it right. Gigi, you still make mommy proud. I love you!”
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