NewsCovering Kern County


Bakersfield resident tattoos Kobe Bryant's jersey numbers on his arm to commemorate victims

Posted at 6:59 PM, Jan 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-28 21:59:11-05

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.  — As the Bakersfield community continues to commemorate Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and the seven other victims who died -- one resident wanted to honor them all permanently.

Sean McConn, 28, said Kobe Bryant has been his idol since birth on Tuesday, as he was getting the NBA legend's jersey numbers tattooed on his arm.

"He was my hero," McConn said.

Ryan Smith, the owner of Society 9 tattoo in northwest Bakersfield, tattooed the piece for McConn free of charge in honor of the Lakers all-star.

During their time together, McConn shared his favorite memories of Kobe with Smith.

McConn spoke of Kobe's 81 point outburst in 2006 and highlighted time he won an Oscar in 2018 for an animated short film.

"Obviously he was a great basketball player, but I feel like he was much more than that," McConn said.

"He's a mentality ... he showed all of us to never give up," McConn added.