Tom Brady pays tribute to Kobe Bryant and urges fans to ‘seize the day’

Kobe Bryant puts up a shot against the Chicago Bulls on Nov. 22, 2002. In an Instagram post remembering the Lakers legend, Tom Brady referred to him as "the real life superhero our world needs."
(Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)

Like so many people around the world, Tom Brady was deeply affected by the death of Kobe Bryant. In an Instagram post Tuesday, Brady revealed that the Lakers legend’s passing has “kept me up at night and brought me so many tears.”

Brady shared what he has learned from the Jan. 26 tragedy and the New England Patriots quarterback’s words might help comfort those who are still grieving.

“Kobe didn’t care whether you were a man or woman, boy or girl, black or white, rich or poor, ordinary or extraordinary, he wanted to help you become the best you could be,” Brady wrote in a post published the day after a public memorial service at Staples Center for Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and the seven others who died in the helicopter crash.


“His mere presence had an effect on everybody he was around. He had the energy to recognize in others what they could not recognize in themselves.”

It was a quality that a man who went from a sixth-round draft pick to six-time Super Bowl champion can appreciate.

“That’s what made Kobe a real superhero,” Brady wrote. “He spoke about mentality with such conviction, about the idea that if you truly believed in something you could achieve it ... you could overcome the obstacles in your path. And not just that, he walked the walk and did the work. He pushed others to find that same confidence. He was the real life superhero our world needs.

Vanessa Bryant, Michael Jordan and Shaquille O’Neal were among those who gave heartfelt tributes to Kobe and Gianna Bryant during their public memorial.

Feb. 24, 2020

“That’s what we will all miss. That’s why we hurt. Because we know that he was always fighting against the norm. He was doing more than his share. Now who is going to do the work that is still here to be done? Who is going to fight and break the norms with love and joy and inspiration? Who is going to discard fear, and doubt, and hate? Who is going to carry the load and be the superhero that he was?

“The answer is simple to me, ALL OF US.”

Baseball agent Scott Boras said he will honor Kobe Bryant’s wishes and set up an internship for John Altobelli’s surviving teenage daughter, Alexis.

Feb. 25, 2020

Brady ends his post by encouraging others to make the types of changes in ourselves that Bryant would have encouraged.


“If there is anything I have learned and been inspired by through this tragic event, it is this, SEIZE THE DAY,” Brady wrote. “That’s what Kobe always did, and that’s what he wanted for us too.”