I imagine that at this moment, you've already learned of the truly horrible and tragic events of yesterday. Nine people lost their lives in a helicopter crash, including NBA legend and future Hall-of-Famer Kobe Bryant and his 13-year old daughter Gianna. That's heartbreaking enough to everyone on a global level. Unfortunately, what's worse is we at the community college level were hit closer to home by learning that longtime Orange Coast College baseball coach John Altobelli - along with his wife Keri and daughter Alyssa – were among the nine on that helicopter.
So many of us are devastated right now, and I can't even fathom the levels of grief the surviving families of those who passed must be feeling right now. One person that comes to my mind is Tony Altobelli, Sports Information Director at OCC and John's brother: I got the opportunity to sit with Tony in the press box back on September 14th of last year when OCC hosted us in football. He was a great host, and I learned a good deal about tracking plays and providing hospitality to media members and the like. So Tony, if you happen to read this, please know that you and your family are in our hearts and prayers over here at Monterey Park as we mourn this day.
We will likely have some form of observance this Wednesday, January 29th right before tipoff of our basketball women & men's doubleheader with Pasadena City College at 5pm. It feels proper in many respects to do this before a basketball game because basketball is a global game, and Kobe was at the top of it during many instances in his illustrious career. If you can, please join us as we take a moment to honor Kobe and his daughter, John and his wife and daughter, and the others who were lost yesterday.
#HuskiesLife bows its head in mourning and silence.
#RIPKobe #RIPMambacita #RIPAlto #RIPTheChesters #RIPChristinaMauser #RIPAraZobayan