As a five-time NBA Champion with countless fans across the Planet, the late LA Lakers guard Kobe Bean Bryant (more popularly known as Kobe Bryant) had every claim to fame while he lived. So, naturally, everyone who knew him often wants to know the woman who was in his life too. In this post, therefore, we bring you details on late Kobe’s wife Vanessa Laine Bryant.
Vanessa already achieved relative fame as an up and coming supermodel before she met Kobe. But then, her association with the-then NBA star really shot her profile through the roofs. In this post, you will learn a lot more about her.
Who is Vanessa Laine Bryant and How Old is She?
Vanessa was born in Huntington Beach, California, USA, on May 5, 1982, under the Taurus sun sign. Her full legal name is currently Vanessa Marie Bryant but her maiden name was Vanessa Cornejo Urbieta. At a time, her last name was legally changed to ‘Laine’. How come all these complex name changes? Here is the story:
Vanessa’s mother Sofia had been married to a man whose family name is ‘Urbietta’ but whose first name we are still seeking to find. Sofia bore the man two girls, Vanessa and her elder sister Sophie. When Vanessa was three years old, her parents went through a divorce. So, she and her sister were largely raised by their single mother. After some years, Vanessa’s mother Sofia met and married a businessman named Stephen Laine. Although Stephen never adopted Vanessa, she still changed her legal name to Vanessa Laine (probably as an honor done to her step-father Stephen or for the sake of convenience). She bore ‘Laine’ as her last name until she got married to Kobe Bryant in 2001. However, her mother Sofia divorced Stephen Laine the following year 2002 which prompted her to change her legal name entirely to Vanessa Marie Bryant, removing ‘Laine’. But, as a model, she was already publicly known with the name which is why we are using it here for ease of communication.
For her education, Vanessa Laine Bryant attended St. Boniface Parish School Anaheim, CA, before proceeding to Marina High School, part of the Huntington Beach Union High School District in California. It was in high school that Vanessa began to model. In fact, she had gotten modeling clout enough to be invited to the Teen Choice Award events in 1999 while she was still in high school. It was at those events (and some say it was on the set of a Snoop Dogg music video) that she met Kobe for the first time and they began to date. By that time, Kobe had already been in the NBA for 3 seasons. So, the media hullabaloo created from the fact that she was dating an NBA star as a high schooler forced Vanessa to drop out of high school in her senior year. She, however, completed her studies via homeschooling.
After Vanessa Laine Bryant met Kobe in 1999, they dated for about two years before ratifying the union at a wedding that held at Saint Edward’s Roman Catholic Church, Dana Point, CA, on April 18, 2001. Eventually, they began to make babies and, so far, they have four beautiful daughters: Natalia Diamante was born in 2003, Gianna Maria-Onore in 2006, and Bianka Bella arrived in another space of ten years in 2016. On New Year Day of 2019, Vanessa and her husband announced that they were expecting their fourth daughter. Eventually, in the afternoon on June 20, 2019, the couple announced on social media that the expected bundle of joy just arrived. She was named Capri “Koko” Kobe Bryant. Their second daughter Gianna sadly died alongside her dad in the ill-fated helicopter crash on January 26, 2020.
Other Quick Facts About Kobe Bryant’s Wife, Vanessa Laine Bryant
- Vanessa Laine Bryant is an American citizen with Mexican, German, English and Irish ancestral roots. Her ethnic identity is Hispanic.
- Her marriage with Kobe almost collapsed about ten years after it started. But the cracks that would have done the damage began to appear only two years into the marriage. After they had wedded in 2001, a woman accused Kobe of sexual assault in 2003.
- This got Kobe entangled in a legal battle in which Kobe’s defence was that the sexual encounter between him and the woman was consensual.
- He won the case but began to lose the trust of his new wife Vanessa. This distrust continued and finally resulted in Vanessa filing for divorce on December 16, 2011, citing infidelity and irreconcilable differences.
- However, just the following month (on January 11, 2012), the couple announced that they had gotten over it and that their divorce plans were cancelled.
- Vanessa Laine Bryant currently resides in Newport Coast in Los Angeles, CA with her husband and daughters.
- The brunette beauty stands at a height of 5 feet, 5 inches (165cm or 1.65m) and weighs 65kg (134.5lbs) on the average. Her hair colour is black and her eye colour is dark brown.
- As of 2019, Vanessa Laine Bryant has a net worth estimated at $75 million which she has probably gathered from her work as a model. Yet, there is no doubt that she has leveraged on her husband’s estimated net worth of $500 million. After all, she has no major modelling deal to her name currently.