BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The tragic death of retired NBA star Kobe Bryant is touching hearts across the world. It is also impacting local student athletes who watched Bryant on TV as children.
"When I heard of Kobe's death, I just broke down in tears," said David Hughes, a member of the East High School basketball team in Buffalo.
"Tragic. Kobe was a big inspiration for me," added Danny Carter, who is also on the same team.
7 Eyewitness News Reporter Ed Reilly spent the day getting reaction from student athletes and coaches, including Massai Graham, age 16, who is ranked 52 in the country for best young basketball talent among high school freshman and sophomores.
"He moved a lot of people in the time that he has been on this earth," said Graham.
Dondi Marsh, president of the North East Basketball Club in Buffalo, said Bryant's dedication to hard-work on and off the court made him a good role model for young people. "It is bigger than basketball the game, it is about life and life after basketball," said Marsh.
Hear more from the student athletes and the coaches in the attached clip.