Kobe Bryant’s Older Sister Pays Tribute to Brother & Niece Gianna with Meaningful Tattoo

Sharia Washington honors her brother, Kobe Bryant, and niece Gianna after their tragic deaths.

Wednesday on Instagram, the famed athlete’s older sister shared an image of her new tattoo drawn by artist Peter Barrios.

The ink features the numbers “2” and “24” — Gianna and Kobe’s respective basketball jersey numbers — and a snake, in reference to her younger sibling’s nickname “The Black Mamba.”

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Thank you @peterbarriostattoo 🙏🐍💕

A post shared by Sharia Washington (@shariawash) on

Barrios later reposted Washington’s touching image, and wrote, “Thank you for laughing with me today and letting me do this for you. I will never forget our conversations. Much love and respect your family.”

In his 2015 documentary “Kobe Bryant’s Muse,” the former Los Angeles Laker explained that he created the nickname to cope with the struggles he faced in 2003 and 2004.

Though he did not mention it directly, the NBA star dealt with a sexual assault case during this time. Criminal charges were eventually dismissed in September 2004, and the civil case was settled in March 2005.

“I had to separate myself,” Bryant said in the film. “It felt like there were so many things coming at once. It was just becoming very, very confusing. I had to organize things. So I created ‘The Black Mamba.’”

On January 26, nine victims — including Kobe and Gianna — were killed after their helicopter crashed in Calabasas, California.

This month, Kobe’s widow and Gianna’s mother, Vanessa Bryant, filed a wrongful death suit against the owner of the rotorcraft, as well as a representative and/or successor for pilot Ara Zobayan — who also passed away in the tragedy.


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