Ryan Seacrest Paid Tribute to Kobe Bryant During Grammy Red Carpet

During the first few minutes of Live From the Red Carpet with Ryan Seacrest and Giuliana Rancic, the duo paid tribute to Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna, who were killed in a helicopter crash yesterday.

“We are starting the show on a very somber note,” he began. “We want to take a moment to say we are deeply saddened by the passing of Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and the others aboard the helicopter which tragically crashed today in Calabasas, California.”

He continued, “Kobe was 41 years old and was one of the greatest basketball players and greatest athletes to ever live. His loss will be felt even more deeply tonight at a place he considered home. This is the Staples Center. We’re sending our heartfelt condolences to his beloved wife and the family he left behind. His absence will be felt by so many people that he touched.”

Kobe, Gianna, and seven others were headed to Bryant’s Mamba Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks, Calif. when the helicopter caught fire before crashing. Everyone was killed in the crash.

Bryant’s wife, Vanessa, and their other three daughters, Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri, 7 months, were not on board.

During the coverage, Giuliana added, “My heart is so heavy today, like so many people watching… as a mother, as a wife, as a human, my heart goes out to Vanessa and her family tonight.”

“This is a man we have gotten to know over the years,” Ryan continued. “He was on the phone with me a few months ago talking about the love of being a father, talking about his daughters so pridefully.”

Thank you, Ryan and Giuliana, for taking time to pay tribute. Our hearts go out to the Bryant family.