It is believed Kobe and Gianna were on their way to basketball practice when the helicopter went down [Image: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports/File Photo]

Basketball legend Kobe Bryant has died aged 41 in a helicopter crash in California alongside his 13-year-old daughter Gianna.

The pair were travelling in a private helicopter when it crashed in Calabasas on Sunday morning at around 10am local time.

Five people have been confirmed dead as a result of the crash, which is now under investigation.

READ ALSO: Kobe Bryant and daughter among 9 killed in helicopter crash near Los Angeles

After hearing the devastating news, celebrities have rushed to share their tributes for the iconic sportstar.

Kim Kardashian was among those to pay her respects to the family as she spoke out on Twitter.

"My heart is so heavy. No one should ever experience what the families involved are going through. This has affected us all so much but I cannot begin to imagine what Vanessa is feeling losing her husband and her baby girl. I cry just thinking about it," she told her followers.

The reality star then followed this up with: "I am praying for the Bryant family, the Altobelli family and the families of all who perished in this unthinkable tragedy. Rest In Peace Legend."

Her younger sister Kylie also shared her thoughts on the tragic events with a picture of Bryant and his late daughter.


A post shared by Kylie ? (@kyliejenner) on

She captioned the heartbreaking picture: "At a loss for words right now. Praying for this beautiful family'.

Cleveland Cavaliers player Tristan Thompson also mourned the loss on Sunday.

"I’m at a loss for words. I can’t believe this man. RIP Kobe and his daughter Gianna, it was a honor to be able to compete with you. Incredible player, even better person" he wrote.

Demo Lovato took to Instagram to pay tribute to Kobe with a photo of the pair together.

Good Morning Britain presenter Piers Morgan has also shared a stunning picture detailing a quote from Kobe.

The chilling quote referenced how Kobe wanted to be remembered as it read:

"I want to be remembered as a person who squeezed every ounce of of juice out of the orange that is life".

Following up with a heartfelt paragraph, singer John Legend praised the 'brilliant man'.

Late-night host Jimmy Kimmel shared an emotional tribute to the former Los Angeles Lakers player, remembering Bryant and his legacy.

"He was great, charismatic & among the hardest-working athletes ever, but what impressed me most was how deeply-involved Kobe was with his 4 daughters,” Kimmel wrote on Twitter.

"Pray for them, Vanessa, his parents & his fellow passengers’ families on this sad and shocking day. We will never forget you Kobe."

Ledley King labelled Kobe as his hero while sharing a candid snap of the pair together.

Sport star Jenson Button paid tribute to the NBA player by insisting that he was the greatest player that has ever lived.

Khloe Kardashian took to Twitter to share her compelte disbelief as she wrote "No, no no".

Rapper A$AP Rocky tweeted, “RIP KOBE, SO SAD, SUCH A SAD DAY N SAD NEWS, WE LOVE U,” while NFL star JJ Watt shared, “Can’t be true. Just can’t be. Truly truly horrific. Rest in Peace Kobe.”

Sportstar Dwyane Wade pleaded with the heavens that the news wasn't true as he wrote:

"Noooooo God please No!" upon hearing the shocking news.

Pau Gasol stated that he was devastated and labeled Kobe as his "big brother" and admitted he couldn't 'believe it'.

Chrissy Teigen also took to Twitter to share her disbelief at the tragic news.

Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers recalled the impact Bryant had on his own career in the NBA, tweeting that as a child he had been inspired to play basketball by the former NBA star.

"Man I don’t even know where to start. I started playing ball because of KOBE after watching the 2010 finals. I had never watched ball before that and that finals was the turning point of my life,” he shared. “I WANTED TO BE LIKE KOBE. I’m so FREAKING SAD right now!!!! RIP LEGEND."

Kobe Bryant's helicopter reportedly circled 10 times above Los Angeles aerospace before it crashed killing all five people onboard.

READ ALSO: Alicia Keys pays emotional tribute to Kobe Bryant at Grammy Awards hours after fatal crash

Radar shows how the aircraft hovered over the city of Glendale for 15 minutes before it eventually slammed into a mountainside in Calabasas, around 20 miles from downtown LA.

Dispatch audio has been released in which the operator is heard directing emergency personnel to the crash scene.

Data provided by Flightradar24 showed that the S-76 helicopter took off from nearby Orange County.

Judging by the flight path taken, the chopper carrying Bryant circled at least 10 times over a period of 15 minutes before crashing.