Los Angeles, CA – Vanessa Bryant is speaking out for the first time since the shocking deaths of her husband Kobe Bryant and 13-year-old daughter Gianna, who were killed in a helicopter crash on Sunday (January 26) alongside seven other people.

On Wednesday (January 29), the grieving widow took to her Instagram account to express not only her sorrow but also the immense gratitude for the millions of people who reached out. Kobe is survived by Vanessa and their three other daughters — Natalia, 17, Bianka, 7, and Capri, seven months.

“My girls and I want to thank the millions of people who’ve shown support and love during this horrific time,” she began. “Thank you for all the prayers. We definitely need them. We are completely devastated by the sudden loss of my adoring husband, Kobe — the amazing father to our children; and my beautiful, sweet Gianna — a loving, thoughtful, and wonderful daughter, and amazing sister to Natalia, Bianka and Capri. We are also devastated for the families who lost their loved ones on Sunday, and we share in their grief intimately.”

Vanessa continued, “There aren’t enough words to describe our pain right now. I take comfort in knowing that Kobe and Gigi both knew that they were so deeply loved. We were so incredibly blessed to have them in our lives. I wish they were here with us forever. They were our beautiful blessings taken from us too soon.

“I’m not sure what our lives hold beyond today, and it’s impossible to imagine life without them. But we wake up each day, trying to keep pushing because Kobe, and our baby girl, Gigi, are shining on us to light the way.”

Vanessa went on to say their love for Kobe and Gianna is “endless” and “immeasurable.” She also announced the Mamba Sports Foundation has set up a special fund to assist the other families through the ordeal, while requesting privacy.

“Thank you for sharing your joy, your grief and your support with us,” she continued. “We ask that you grant us the respect and privacy we will need to navigate this new reality. To honor our Team Mamba family, the Mamba Sports Foundation has set up the MambaOnThree Fund to help support the other families affected by this tragedy.”

To donate to the MambaOn Three Fund, head here.