Island Express Helicopters — the company that operated the fateful flight that crashed and killed NBA star Kobe Bryant and eight others, including the pilot — has received $603,838 in CARES Act funding.
The Department of the Treasury published a list of aviation companies that received the payroll support stemming from the coronavirus pandemic, reports Web site Private Jet Card Comparisons. The list also includes major airlines such as United, Delta, American, Southwest and JetBlue.
Bryant’s widow, Vanessa Bryant, who also lost daughter Gianna in the Jan. 26 crash, filed a wrongful death suit against Island Express in LA in February. She alleges that Bryant was “killed as a direct result of the negligent conduct of [the pilot] for which Defendant Island Express Helicopters is vicariously liable in all respects.”
Island Express reportedly responded in court papers that passengers knew the dangers and risks involved with the flight and “voluntarily assume[d] the risk of the accident, injury, and damages.”