Kobe Bryant had one of the most decorated careers not only in the history of basketball but in sports. The former Los Angeles Laker, who was known as one of the best and most hardworking athletes in the world, played 20 seasons in the NBA, won five NBA championships, was an 18-time All-Star, and a four-time All-Star MVP.
Kobe ultimately retired from basketball in 2016. He went on to earn an Oscar for Best Animated Short.
On January 26, 2020, Kobe’s life was tragically cut short at 41 in a helicopter crash that also took the life of his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna Maria Onore Bryant.
Take a look back at his prolific life and career.
1997: Kobe Bryant #8 of the Los Angeles Lakers poses for a photo outside the Great Western Forum in Inglewood, California. In 1998, at just 19-years old, Kobe was the youngest to start in an All-Star game.
Kobe soars for a dunk during the 1997 NBA All Star Slam Dunk Contest February 8, 1997 at the Gund Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.
The Los Angeles Lakers guard and Chicago Bulls guard, Michael Jordan talk during a free-throw attempt during the fourth quarter December 17, 1997 at the United Center in Chicago. Bryant, who was 19 and bypassed college basketball to play in the NBA, scored a team-high 33 points off the bench, and Jordan scored a team-high 36 points. The Bulls defeated the Lakers 104-83.
Kobe goes strong to the hoop against the Toronto Raptors on January 22, 2006 against the Toronto Raptors. Bryant scored 81 points in the game.
Kobe and LeBron James of the U.S. Men's Senior National Team poses for portraits after defeating Spain 118-107 in the men's gold medal basketball game at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games at the Intercontinental Hotel on August 24, 2008 in Beijing, China.
Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant of the Western Conference hold up the MVP trophy as they were named co-MVPs at the NBA All-Star basketball game on February 15, 2009, in Phoenix.
President Barack Obama poses for photographs with Kobe Bryant and members of the National Basketball Association 2009 champions Los Angeles Lakers in the East Room of the White House January 25, 2010 in Washington, DC. The Lakers bested the Orlando Magic to win the NBA Finals in 2009.
Kobe celebrates after winning over the Boston Celtics in Game Seven of the 2010 NBA Finals on June 17, 2010 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.
Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers addresses the crowd after scoring 60 points in his final NBA game at Staples Center on April 13, 2016. The Lakers defeated the Utah Jazz 101-96.
Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers watches a tribute at AT&T Center on February 6, 2016 in San Antonio, Texas.
Kobe Bryant, wife Vanessa Bryant and daughters Gianna Maria Onore Bryant, Natalia Diamante Bryant and Bianka Bella Bryant attend Kobe Bryant's jersey retirement ceremony during halftime of a basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors at Staples Center on December 18, 2017
Lin-Manuel Miranda and Kobe Bryant attend the 2018 Vanity Fair Oscar Party. Kobe took home an Oscar for Best Animated Short Film for Dear Basketball.
Kobe Bryant and Gianna Bryant attends the game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks on December 29, 2019.
Vanessa Laine Bryant and Kobe Bryant attend the 2019 Vanity Fair Oscar Party on February 24, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California.
Photos: Getty Images