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How Atlanta is paying tribute to late NBA legend Kobe Bryant

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Purple and gold can be spotted on landmarks throughout the city, honoring the fallen Lakers icon

The Mercedes-Benz Stadium illuminated purple and gold.
Atlanta’s most recognizable sports coliseum has reverent hues this week.
Mercedes-Benz Stadium, via Twitter

The untimely death Sunday of basketball great Kobe Bryant sent shockwaves throughout not just the sporting world but everyone impacted by the iconic Lakers player’s influence on the court and off.

Like many cities across the globe, Atlanta is bowing its proverbial head in a very public way, honoring the man many consider one of the greatest to ever grace a basketball court.

A helicopter chauffeuring Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, and seven others crashed on Sunday, killing all aboard. From city officials at the highest level to neighborhood artists, Atlanta was clearly moved.

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms on Monday announced on Twitter that City Hall would be lit with purple and gold, a somber nod to the Los Angeles Lakers uniform Bryant wore for two decades.

The city’s famed Mercedes-Benz Stadium glowed purple and gold on Sunday and Monday evening, too, as did parts of Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, and downtown’s Georgia’s Own Credit Union building.

Georgia’s Own CEO Dave Preter, in a statement emailed to Curbed Atlanta, said the company felt inclined to pay respects to Bryant with its new LED video screen atop the downtown building because of Bryant’s positive, global influence.

“Given the impact Kobe Bryant had on so many people around the world, including within our community here in Atlanta, we wanted to use the biggest platform we have to share our love and appreciation,” Preter said.

The top of a tall black tower has a light board that reads “Thank you, Mamba.”
Downtown’s Georgia’s Own Credit Union building.
Georgia’s Own Credit Union

Atlanta Journal-Constitution political cartoonist Mike Luckovich sketched an homage to Bryant and his daughter.

And murals of the Black Mamba—a nickname for Bryant’s fierce competitive spirit—have already begun popping up around Atlanta, including at highly visible walls along the Beltline.