Earlier today, Catherine Zeta Jones, 50, paid tribute to American basketball player Kobe Bryant, who was killed in a helicopter crash yesterday along with his 13-year-old daughter and seven others.
The Welsh actress, who moved to America shortly before meeting her husband Michael Douglas, 75, in 1998, spoke about a time when the sports star was her neighbour.
According to her post, they lived next door to each other in the late 1990s, in the Los Angeles neighbourhood of Pacific Palisades, when his career with the LA Lakers was just beginning.
Catherine’s emotional post spoke fondly about the five-time NBA champion, who famously wore a number 24 shirt.
It read: “RIP Kobe. 24 years ago, ironically, Kobe was my next door neighbor in Pacific Palisades in LA.”
The actress went on to reveal how the pair met, explaining: “Both young and ambitious. We met the day he moved in through his dog, that started to, and continued to wander in to my garden.”
Catherine continued: “His basketball court was my view. I watched his talent and dedication, yet how could I have known that he was to become what he became.”
Following a 20 season career with the Los Angeles Lakers, Kobe retired in 2016 and is widely considered to be one of the greatest players in the game’s history.
On Sunday morning, the sporting legend died following a helicopter crash in California at the age of 41.
His 13-year-old daughter Gianna also died in the accident.