As the nation and the world mourn the passing of a legend, one anchor offered her own emotional reaction–and started trending around the country.

By Kristi Pahr
January 29, 2020

When Elle Duncan started her short segment on the death of basketball legend, Kobe Bryant, she probably had no idea that she would be starting a movement. A somber Duncan began by recounting her first and only meeting with Bryant, backstage at an ESPN event. Duncan immediately wanted a photo with the mega-star, but Bryant was more interested in chatting with her about her "rather large, 8-month pregnant belly." The pair chatted and when Bryant found out she was having a girl he was elated. "Girls are the best!" Bryant said as he high-fived the anchor.

During her segment, Duncan went on to describe their chat—how he gushed about his girls, how he would have 5 more girls if he could, and how he proudly proclaimed himself a Girl Dad. The pair chatted about sports and Bryant described how proud he was of his middle daughter, Gianna. "She's a monster. She's a beast. She's better than I was at her age," he told Duncan. Duncan, overcome when relaying the story, began to cry on air.

Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant attend a basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Atlanta Hawks at Staples Center on November 17, 2019 in Los Angeles, California.
Allen Berezovsky/Getty Images

And because there's still love and hope and compassion in the world, there was an outpouring of support when Duncan's emotional segment hit social media. On Twitter, #girldad starting trending and the internet was flooded with proud girl dads sharing photos. Duncan tweeted later, "I’m so moved by the outpouring of support behind my story about Kobe. And I love that #girldad is trending.. so for all those proud fathers who still have their girls to love on can you flood my timeline with pics of you and your flock. Honestly I need it as much as anyone rt now."

What followed were thousands and thousands of heartwarming and heartbreaking posts and photos.

For all you #girldads out there, thank you for loving your daughters, supporting them, and helping them grow into strong women.

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