"Watts Kobe Bryant Memorial Mural" • PeQue
“Heroes come and heroes go but legends are forever. — Kobe Bryant (1978-2020)
On January 26, 2020, news of the unexpected passing of basketball legend Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna shocked the world. Fans flocked to Staples Center and erected a public memorial to honor the Black Mamba and Mambacita. Tears and tributes flowed across social media and at the recent public memorial on February 24th. People recount stories of where they were and what they were doing when they heard the tragic news of Kobe’s death. This storytelling reminds one of how others share their memories of where they were when they received the news that John F. Kennedy was assassinated. Or perhaps here they were when they learned that planes struck the World Trade Center on 9/11. These are moments that leave indelible marks on our memories and our hearts. It’s the shock of something happening that we never thought possible that creates an urge to share how it impacted us. The passing of Kobe Bryant was one of those moments.
To those in either the neuroendocrine cancer (neuroendocrine tumor or NET) community or music community, the passing of LACNETS founder and jazz musician Giovanna Joyce Imbesi was equally shocking. To the world, Kobe was invincible. To us, Giovanna was invincible. The loss of our heroes reminds us that we are mere mortals. Life is short. It makes us pause and evaluate what really matters. We hug our loved ones a little tighter. We consider our plans. How am I investing my life? What is the legacy that I want to leave?
Consider the legacy of Giovanna Joyce Imbesi. Giovanna lived richly and fully with neuroendocrine cancer for 14 years. Following her diagnosis, she pursued an MBA with the sole purpose of founding and building a nonprofit to build a community of education and support for NET patients and their loved ones. Giovanna was an extraordinary visionary.
Through LACNETS, we extend awareness, education, and support to the NET community locally, nationally, and even internationally. Giovanna inspired many to dream and reach for the stars. Through her encouragement and support, many learned to thrive despite living with NET. Giovanna was a light. She modeled inspiration and hope to all who met her. Giovanna is more than a hero; she is a legend. And Giovanna will live on through LACNETS. The LACNETS board, staff, community, and partners are committed to carrying on the legacy that Giovanna created that she herself stated she was most proud of – LACNETS. (Click here to read the recent message to the LACNETS community from the LACNETS board.) We invite you to join us to carry on her torch! Here are ways you can help carry on Giovanna’s legacy:
TALK about neuroendocrine cancer, LACNETS, and the tools Giovanna created such as NET VITALS. Tell your community of family, friends, colleagues, and medical professionals about LACNETS. We once asked Giovanna how far she wanted to extend the outreach and impact of LACNETS. She responded, “I want to reach as many people as we can.” You can help us spread awareness! Bring NET materials such as the HealingNET Primer and LACNETS rack cards to your medical professional. [Click here to email us and request rack cards]
SHARE your feedback. Fill out the post-meeting questionnaires after any meeting you attend. Email us your stories about how LACNETS has impacted your life. Your testimonials can help us fund our programs!
FOLLOW and LIKE the LACNETS Facebook page where all of our meetings can be livestreamed.
SUBSCRIBE to and LIKE the LACNETS YouTube channel where you can find videos of all our past meetings.
READ our previous blog post "Spreading NET Awareness - How You Can Make A Difference.”
IN LIEU OF FLOWERS OR GIFTS, PLEASE SEND A DONATION TO LACNETS TO CARRY ON GIOVANNA’S LEGACY.
LACNETS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation, Tax ID #20-0062062. All donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law.
PLEASE FEEL FREE TO LEAVE A TRIBUTE TO GIOVANNA IN THE COMMENTS SECTION BELOW.
Note: The use of the "Black Mamba" image is only authorized for the blog article LACNETS (LACNETS Blog — LACNETS), a non profit organization involving Kobe Bryant. No other recreation or distribution is allowed without the expressed written permission from Patrick Q. Brown, Sr. or LIQUID Arts and Productions, LLC.
Written by Lisa Yen, NP, NBC-HWC
Director of Programs & Outreach, LACNETS