WESTWOOD, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Among the many tributes honoring the late Kobe Bryant this week, the Lakers marked what would have been his 45th birthday by presenting a gift to each newborn at UCLA's Mattel Children's hospital.
The babies born on Wednesday, Bryant's birthday, received Kobe-inspired gifts including blankets and beanies sporting an 8, one of the jersey numbers he wore during his legendary NBA career.
The team also sent a note to each child's parents that read: "Here's to your next-generation Lakers fan. They've already got a little of the Mamba Mentality in them."
Meanwhile, on Thursday night the Ferris wheel at Santa Monica Pier is expected to be lit up in honor of Bryant.
The Laker legend's jersey numbers, 8 and 24, will be illuminated purple and gold in recognition of Kobe Bryant Day.
The 8/24 date is also known to fans as Black Mamba Day or simply Mamba Day, and was chosen to match Bryant's numbers, as well as it being the day after his birthday. Bryant would have turned 45 on Wednesday.
To mark the occasion, Nike debuted the Nike Kobe 8 Protro "Halo" shoe. The company said it partnered with Bryant's widow, Vanessa Bryant, who created the design for the sneaker.
Also on Thursday, the Lakers and Bryant's widow Vanessa Bryant announced that a statue memorializing Kobe will be unveiled on Feb. 8, 2024.
"As you know, Kobe played his entire 20-year NBA career as a Los Angeles Laker," Vanessa Bryant said in a video released at 8:24 a.m. "Since arriving in this city and joining the Lakers organization, he felt at home here, playing in the City of Angels. On behalf of the Lakers, my daughters and me, I am so honored that, right in the center of Los Angeles, in front of the place known as the house that Kobe built, we are going to unveil his statue so that his legacy can be celebrated forever."