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Kobe Bryant Loved His Sikorsky S-76 Private Helicopter – Fog Likely Factor in Deadly Crash

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*Legendary basketball star Kobe Bryant was with eight others in his private helicopter, a Sikorsky S-76B — a model with a strong safety record — when it crashed in Calabasas, California, on January 26. 

His daughter Gianna, 13, was also on board the aircraft during the tragic accident amid foggy conditions.

Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said nine people were on the copter — a pilot and eight passengers

The recovery effort is expected to take several days because of the condition of the crash site and its remote location. 

Meanwhile, more details are being reported about Bryant’s Sikorsky S-76B helicopter, which he used to avoid traffic between his Orange County home and Los Angeles. According to a GQ profile in 2010, Bryant used the helicopter to fly from his home in to Lakers home games and elsewhere. 

“But sexy as it might seem, Bryant says the helicopter is just another tool for maintaining his body. It’s no different than his weights or his whirlpool tubs or his custom-made Nikes. Given his broken finger, his fragile knees, his sore back and achy feet, not to mention his chronic agita, Bryant can’t sit in a car for two hours. The helicopter, therefore, ensures that he gets to Staples Center feeling fresh, that his body is warm and loose and fluid as mercury when he steps onto the court.”

Hear Kobe tell it via the clip below.

OTHER NEWS YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED: Here’s Touching Footage of GiGi Bryant Showing off B-ball Skills in HEELS! – WATCH

Kobe & Sikorsky Helicopter (Getty)

Kobe & his Sikorsky S-76 Helicopter (Getty)

According to Business Insider, the Sikorsky S-76 has had a good safety record since its first flight in 1977. 

The first Sikorsky helicopter was designed for commercial use and its design was inspired by the UH-60 Black Hawk military helicopter, the outlet reprots. 

The S-76 was first designed for corporate transportation, especially within the oil industry. Over the years, it has commonly been used for medical transportation.

Bryant’s specific helicopter — registration N72EX — was built in 1991. According to FAA records, it was owned by Island Express Holding Corp.

Authorities are still investigating potential causes of the crash, but overcast skies and fog conditions might have played a role.

“We do know there was an issue with visibility and a low ceiling,” Villanueva said Sunday evening. “The actual conditions at the time of impact, that is still yet to be determined.”

According to TMZ, “flight tracker data shows Kobe’s chopper appeared to first encounter weather issues as it was above the L.A. Zoo. It circled that area at least 6 times at a very low altitude — around 875 feet — perhaps waiting for the fog to clear,” the outlet writes. 

WATCH:

Here’s more from TMZ:

The pilot contacted the control tower at Burbank Airport around 9:30 AM PT, and the tower was aware the pilot had been circling for about 15 minutes. The pilot eventually headed north along the 118 freeway before turning to the west, and started following above the 101 freeway around Woodland Hills, CA.

At around 9:40 AM they encounter more weather — as in seriously heavy fog — and the chopper turned south. This was critical, because they turned toward a mountainous area. The pilot suddenly and rapidly climbed from about 1200 feet up to 2000 feet.

However, moments later — around 9:45 AM — they flew into a mountain at 1700 feet. Flight tracker data shows they were flying at about 161 knots.

The Federal Aviation Administration said it would investigate the crash.

 

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Nona Hendryx to Host Global Virtual Event with Special Guest Appearance by Angela Davis

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Nona Hendryx

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*Singer, songwriter, and activist Nona Hendryx in conjunction with Nubian Q.U.E.E.N.X., have partnered with the international feminist group JASS (Just Associates) to present a “Musical Meditation and Celebration of Radical Healing” on Friday, August 14, 2020. This global, multi-artist virtual online event is designed to share and affirm our connections and power in a time of uprising and crisis through music, dance, poetry, and guided meditations. Featuring female performing entities from around the world, including noted activist, academic, and author Angela Davis, this one-of-a-kind event will be live-streamed on the StreamYard platform beginning at 4:00 p.m. EST/1:00 p.m. PST/2:00 MT/7:00 p.m. UCT.

JASS was founded in 2003 by activists, organizers, popular educators, and scholars from five continents, including Lisa VeneKlasen, who recently stepped down as Executive Director, and Shereen Essof, the current Executive Director, who are connected by their commitment to grassroots feminist organizing and justice through shared political struggles from Central America to Zimbabwe, South Africa, and the Philippines.

Hendryx – a former member of Grammy Hall of Fame trio LaBelle – and VeneKlasen have long wanted to collaborate politically on an event spotlighting women’s often invisible role in the ongoing fight to address unfinished struggles of our liberation – violence, inequality, racism, discrimination, stigma, and more. Initially planning to partner to celebrate Women’s History Month in March, then Black Music Month in June, they postponed plans when the country was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic as well as by the global outcry for racial and social justice. With numerous artists and organizations taking to online platforms for performances and fundraisers, Hendryx and VeneKlasen decided that August was a stronger opportunity for the two women-focused entities to address both the hopeful possibilities and trauma and pain of these times.

“By radical healing, we’re acknowledging the power of music to lift our spirits and connect us across all our differences,” says Hendryx. “We recognize that we can’t build and sustain strong movements for the long haul with broken people who bear the brunt of crises and violence. We need moments of shared joy and connections as much as information and strategy.” Adding that women’s role at the forefront of numerous movements has been powerful and consistent, she also notes, “some of the most amazing music ever created has been birthed from struggle.”

Shereen Essof, JASS Executive Director, adds, “In the face of crises and violence, feminist organizers believe that our collective healing is vital to building strong, agile movements for the future. Songs, music, dancing, and poetry are part of a long tradition of activism and communities organizing for justice globally. We are incredibly excited to co-create this moment of radical healing with these extraordinary artists.”

Hendryx will perform with New York-based collective Nubian Q.U.E.E.N.X. (Quantum, Unique, Evolving, Essence of Nubian Sistas), a musical meditation on the affirmation of healing traumas of the past and present while answering questions and exploring ways to move forward. First presented at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., in September 2019 with special guests Divinity Roxx, Be Steadwell, Liza Jessie Peterson, the group will be joined by Sophia Ramos for the August 14th performance.  Q.U.E.E.N.X. is a multi-generational, multi-disciplinary blending of music, spoken word, hip-hop, funk, rock, and avant-garde. The group has been hailed for its unique performances that embrace a broad range of audiences, particularly the African American, Latinx, Indigenous Natives, and LGBTQI communities.

Also joining Nubian Q.U.E.E.N.X. for this special presentation in radical healing will be noted women artists from around the globe, including South African actress and poet Lebo Mashile; indigenous Guatemalan singer Sara Carruchich; Zimbabwean singer and Mbira player, Hope Masike; and Filipina theater actress and singer Monique Wilson.

For more information and reservations for this event, please go to https://nona-hendryx.squarespace.com/nubianqueenx and https://www.justassociates.org/

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Evelyn Lozada Gets Emotional Recalling Ochocinco Abuse [VIDEO]

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EVELYN LOZADA, Chad "Ochocinco" Johnson

*Evelyn Lozada has responded to the recent comments her ex-husband, former NFL star Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson, made about his 2012 domestic violence case.

“I lost my temper for once in life for 3 seconds & it cost me a lifetimes worth of work,” he tweeted without mentioning the incident. “I got it all back plus some after getting a 2nd chance & NOTHING will ever get me out of that happy space again.”

As reported by thejasminebrand.com, Johnson was arrested and charged with domestic battery in 2012 following an altercation with Lozada. She filed for divorce days after.

He pleaded no contest and struck a plea deal and served a year-long probation sentence.

Johnson was also dropped by the Miami Dolphins after his arrest. He and Evelyn also filmed a VH1 realty show that never aired. 

OTHER NEWS YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED: Mary Trump Says ‘Of Course’ She Heard Uncle Donald Use the N-Word (Watch)

The “Basketball Wives” star released a tearful video Thursday in response to Johnson’s tweet.

She captioned the 5 minute clip: “I’m sorry to my kids, my family & friends, my fellow cast-members, their kids & family, the viewers & anyone else I hurt or affected with my actions. I hope & pray my message is received and that this video makes sense. I’m sorry for being so upset but this is HEAVY on my heart. #ILoveAllOfYou”.

In the video Lozada makes clear that Ochocinco was abusive on more than one occasion.

Hear/watch her tell it via the YouTube clip above. 

Evelyn Lozada Cries While Alleging Ochocinco Was Abusive More Than Once [VIDEO]

Johnson’s spoke about his troubled past after social media users asked his advice on how to stay positive.

“What’s the secret? How do you stay so positive? Was it therapy? Not being funny…really asking for myself,” wrote one fan.

Evelyn and Chad were married for only 41 days before she filed for divorce after they had a violent brawl.

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Stephen A. Smith Says NBA Players Will ‘Struggle’ with Sexual Frustration in Orlando / WATCH

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Stephen A. Smith

Stephen A. Smith

*As the NBA prepares for the conclusion of the season in Orlando, Florida, Stephen A. Smith thinks the biggest challenge players will face in the city is the lack of sex due to the COVID-19 lockdown. 

“Do we really think that the ‘recreational activities’ that these guys are accustomed to are going to be compromised for three months?” said Smith on Tuesday’s edition of First Take, per 97 The Game.

The NBA recently shared a photo of courts for the Miami Heat, Indiana Pacers and Orlando Magic being set up inside the bubble at Disney World, offering a first look at team practice rooms being set up in hotels. 

As noted by CBS News, ” as teams start traveling to Orlando next week, we should start getting more information about how everything in the bubble is going to look,” the outlet writes. Adding, “Teams will practice at staggered times in order to promote social distancing and keep everyone healthy. “

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Smith added, “Forget three months. They’re gonna’ struggle with three weeks. Why you think they wanted Vegas?” asked Smith.

Hear him tell it via the Twitter video above.

Meanwhile, Jesse Pantuosco of 97 The Game writes, “the NBA has made its Orlando accommodations as player-friendly as possible with table tennis, on-site barbers, movie-viewing areas and other entertainment options. But even with all those amenities at their disposal, Smith predicts players will leave the premises to fulfill their sexual appetites.”

“They’re gonna’ violate the bubble. That’s what I’m telling you,” Smith insisted. “Somebody’s gotta’ say it.”

Meanwhile, when asked what he would like to see when the league restarts in Florida, Lakers player representative Danny Green told ESPN.  “We got to continue to speak up, continue to figure out ways to affect change as a group,” said Green. “We’ll be competing against each other and focusing on winning, but we still need to focus on what’s the bigger picture.”

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