Former youth basketball camper reflects on Kobe Bryant’s impact
During his life, there were so many young people that Kobe Bryant motivated.
Back in 2007, I met a group of kids at the camp called the "Kobe Basketbal Academy."
This was a weeklong camp to teach kids the fundamentals of basketball and things like good sportsmanship. Bryant also preached teamwork and working together.
At the time, the Lakers superstar told us, "Younger kids, in particular, says things like ‘hey, hey throw me the ball.’ All the kids calling the kids name and we didn’t want to have that."
The kids say he wanted "teamwork, teamwork, teamwork"
Now, 14 years later, that 10-year-old we talked with, Iverson Williams, just got accepted to the University of Florida's medical school. The 23-year-old aspiring doctor spent the day thinking about Kobe Bryant and that thing that Kobe talked about: teamwork.
"Working where I work in Florida, there is teamwork. Teamwork is hard. It’s hard to be on a team. When that team works together, you can reach the stars. You can’t do everything by yourself and even when I think back to Kobe’s career, there are times he had a great team around him but when Shaq left, he made his team great just by bringing everybody together. I think teamwork is definitely something important," Williams said.
Another thing to remembers on this one-year anniversary of his death are the mourners I met just down the street from Bryant's home in Newport Coast. Such sadness, yet such a connection to a sports hero they loved.
As those at a makeshift memorial cried and shared stories, another simply said, "We just lost a legend."
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