Memorial service expected to honor all the victims

Monday’s memorial service is expected to also honor the seven other people who died in the January helicopter crash. Here are snapshots of their stories:

John, Keri and Alyssa Altobelli

John Altobelli served as the head coach of the Orange Coast College Athletics baseball program, in Costa Mesa, for 27 years. During his tenure, he racked up four state championships and last year, he was named National Coach of the Year by the American Baseball Coaches Association.

His 13-year-old daughter, Alyssa, who was best friends with Gianna Bryant, dreamed of becoming a star basketball player. Tony Altobelli, John’s brother, told NBC News that Keri Altobelli was a great mom to Alyssa and the couple’s two other children, Lexi and J.J.

Sarah and Payton Chester

Payton Chester, a 13-year-old basketball player, and her mother, Sarah, were also passengers on the helicopter.

Payton aspired to play basketball in high school and college, according to her uncle Andy George. In an interview with the Orange County Register, he described his sister, Sarah Chester, as “the one everyone counted on.”

Christina Mauser

Christina Mauser, 38, was an assistant basketball coach at the Mamba Sports Academy who had been personally selected for the job by Kobe Bryant, according to her husband, Matt. 

"He picked her because she was amazing," Matt Mauser said during an interview with the “TODAY” show. "I was so proud of her and she was so happy.” Christina Mauser leaves behind the couple's three children.

Ara Zobayan

Ara Zobayan was a certified commercial pilot, flight instructor and ground instructor.

“He was always making sure that every box was checked and, and we never — we never — flew in something that wasn't comfortable," Jacob Chambers, Zobayan’s student, told NBC Los Angeles. "He was one of the best pilots I've flown with.” 

Memorial service to be replayed on NBC News NOW

Starting with Beyoncé singing "XO," one of Kobe's favorite songs, and ending with a replay of his Oscar-winning short, "Dear Basketball," the Kobe and Gianna tribute was chock-full of moving moments and reminders of his enduring legacy. 

If you couldn't watch the memorial service live, the tribute will be replayed starting at 8 p.m. ET via NBC News NOW

Husband and wife hold back tears leaving Staples Center

LOS ANGELES — William and Karen Urgía were blinking back tears as they stepped outside the Staples Center.

They were both especially moved by Michael Jordan’s speech — neither knew the two NBA greats had been so close.

“It really makes you think,” William said.

“The whole service was so moving,” Karen added. “We couldn’t miss it.”

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Tears and hugs as the memorial comes to a close

A sea of black, purple and yellow streamed out of the Staples Center after Jimmy Kimmel, visibly emotional and fighting back tears, closed out the memorial with another tribute to Kobe, Gianna and the other lives lost in last month's helicopter crash. Kimmel introduced a final clip reel showing some of Kobe's most remarkable feats of athleticism.  

People sobbed and hugged one another while exiting into downtown L.A., as moments of quiet were  interrupted by cheers for the legend everyone was there to grieve and celebrate.

Kobe wasn't just an athletic superstar. He was a budding filmmaker.

In addition to dominating professional basketball and inspiring millions with his athletic prowess, Kobe was a budding filmmaking talent with an interest in visual storytelling and animation.

"Of course, because he is Kobe Bryant, the first movie he made won an Oscar," Jimmy Kimmel said before introducing "Dear Basketball," a 2017 animated short written and narrated by Kobe.

"Dear Basketball," with a stirring score by "Star Wars" composer John Williams, triumphed at the 90th Academy Awards in March 2018 — making Kobe the first pro athlete to win an Oscar.

Christina Aguilera sings 'Ave Maria'

Christina Aguilera sang a powerful and somber rendition of "Ave Maria" in Italian to honor Kobe, Gianna, and seven other victims of the helicopter crash. 

Her performance was accompanied by musicians playing stringed instruments, and while the singer did not give a speech, she did blow a kiss to the crowd at the end of the song. 

Shaq gets big laugh with a fondly remembered expletive

Shaq told the crowd that he once tried to talk to Kobe about hogging the ball.

"There's no 'I' in 'team,'" he remembered telling Kobe.

"I know," Kobe replied, per Shaq. "But there's an M-E in that motherf-----."

The audience went wild.

Kobe and Shaq: A brotherhood that ended in love but had its rocky points

Shaquille O'Neal delivered an emotional tribute to Kobe, putting a final loving touch on their relationship that had its share of ups and downs.

They both joined the Lakers in 1996, Shaq already an established superstar and Kobe an 18-year-old rookie. They became one of their sport’s most dynamic duos, leading Los Angeles to three consecutive world titles between 2000 and 2002.

But their eight-year pairing was a rocky one, with both stars needing the ball and maximum credit for the Lakers’ success. 

Two brothers reflect on their 'superman'

Like so many young Angelenos, brothers Miguel and Ronald Alfaro can’t remember the Lakers before Kobe.

Miguel, 24, said his earliest memory was watching a game when he was 5 years old. Those games were always on at home, more so than even the Dodgers, he said.

“Kobe was Superman, you know? Superman isn’t supposed to die,” Ronald, 22, said.

The two could barely hold back tears as they recalled their favorite moments.

Miguel still remembers a game in ‘06 or ‘07 when the Lakers beat the Phoenix Suns. “I don’t know what he did to me, but he touched me in a certain way. I feel like I lost a family member,” he said.

Michael Jordan draws praise for his Kobe speech

Michael Jordan isn't known for his public speaking, but his tribute to Kobe has drawn praise for its insight, candor and levity.