NBA legend Kobe Bryant’s body identified after remains of all nine people recovered who died in a helicopter crash near Los Angeles.
Bryant’s body officially identified along with three others using fingerprints, two days after their helicopter crashed into a rugged hillside northwest of the city.
Meanwhile federal investigators finished their inspection of the crash site, handing it over to local authorities.
“We are done on the site,” said Jennifer Homendy, a member of the National Transportation Safety Board.
Investigators flew drones over the accident site and manually combing through twisted, charred wreckage of the helicopter, which was scattered over a wide area of 180 metres.
Officials also used drones to replicate the helicopter’s final, fateful flight path, Homendy said.
Earlier, the coroner’s office confirmed all nine bodies retrieved from the site and “transported to the department’s forensic science centre” for examination.
The death of Bryant a five-time NBA champion for the LA Lakers and double Olympic gold medallist has put the world in shock.
Bryant, 41, travelling with daughter Gianna and seven other passengers and crew when the Sikorsky S-76 slammed into a hillside in thick fog in Calabasas, northwest of LA.
The 2020 Grammys also kicked off with an emotional tribute to the late NBA legend Kobe Bryant.
Kobe Bryant’s sudden death in a helicopter crash left Los Angeles in tears on music’s marquee night.
The star-studded event’s top nominee Lizzo owned the stage at the Staples Center.
She laid down the event’s overarching theme, ‘Tonight is for Kobe.’
The twerking Lizzo then handed the torch to host Alicia Keys, who offered another love letter to Bryant’s memory.
She said, “We’re all feeling crazy sadness right now. Earlier today, Los Angeles, America and the whole wide world lost a hero.”
“And we’re literally standing here heartbroken in the house that Kobe Bryant built,” said Keys.
She paid tribute to Kobe before launching into a soulful rendition of “It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye” with the group Boyz II Men.
“He [Kobe] would want us to keep the vibrations high,” Keys later said.
A mushrooming crowd of people, many of them in tears, gathered near the arena to mourn the 41-year-old Bryant. Flags flew at half-mast.