Sta­ples Cen­ter takes down public’s mas­sive Kobe Bryant me­mo­rial

Antelope Valley Press - - SPORTS -

LOS AN­GE­LES — A mas­sive me­mo­rial cre­ated by the public out­side Sta­ples Cen­ter af­ter the death of for­mer Lak­ers su­per­star Kobe Bryant was be­ing dis­man­tled Mon­day, with an of­fi­cial say­ing some of the items would go to Bryant’s widow and other fam­ily mem­bers.

The cleanup of flow­ers, bal­loons, jer­seys, stuffed toys and bas­ket­balls be­gan at 4 a.m., Sta­ples Cen­ter Pres­i­dent Lee Zei­d­man tweeted. A fence was erected around the site to keep the cleanup out of public view.

Fans spon­ta­neously be­gan cre­at­ing the me­mo­rial in a plaza out­side the arena as word sur­faced that Bryant, his daugh­ter Gianna and seven other peo­ple were killed Jan. 26 in a he­li­copter crash in sub­ur­ban Cal­abasas. The me­mo­rial kept grow­ing for a week. Per­sonal mes­sages were writ­ten on many of the items.

“Truly amaz­ing the out­pour­ing of love from the City of An­gels in honor of the 9 who lost their lives 1/26/20,” Zei­d­man said. By

mid­morn­ing Mon­day, he said, more than 1,350 bas­ket­balls had been boxed up.

Bryant’s widow, Vanessa, had re­quested items, which were to be cat­a­loged and shipped to the fam­ily. Flow­ers will be com­posted and spread around plants near Sta­ples Cen­ter.

Fans were urged to do­nate to a Bryant foun­da­tion rather than bring more gifts and flow­ers.

As­so­ci­ated Press

CLEAN­ING UP Work­ers re­move thou­sands of items left in honor of Kobe Bryant, in­clud­ing hun­dreds of bas­ket­balls, from X-Box Plaza across Chick Hearn Court from Sta­ples Cen­ter on Mon­day.

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