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Meet some of the best #GirlDads of the DMV

Kobe Bryant was more than just a proud athlete -- he was also a proud father to 4 girls.We asked fathers in DC to share why they too love being a #GirlDad like Kobe.

WASHINGTON — After Kobe Bryant was tragically killed in a helicopter crash alongside his 13-year-old daughter Gianna on Sunday, the loss felt palpable. As with many catastrophes, the sudden death seemed to awaken a newfound sense of appreciation for the every-day relationships with loved ones, family members and friends.

While he was known as a well-awarded legend on the court --- 18-time NBA All-Star, 5-time NBA champion to name a few -- it was Bryant's devotion to his family and philanthropic efforts outside of the arenas that were the backbone of his legacy. It was his wife Vanessa and his four daughters -- Natalia, Capri Pearl, Bianka and Gigi -- that Bryant prized more than any championship ring. 

SportsCenter reporter Elle Duncan highlighted that sacred relationship between Kobe and Gianna with a moving broadcast piece, recounting the time Bryant shared his utmost enthusiasm for being a "girl dad" after learning Duncan was expecting.

Holding back tears, Duncan described that the one piece of solace she could find in her brief encounter with the NBA superstar was that in his final moments, he was doing what he loved best beyond basketball: being a father.

"When I reflect on this tragedy and that half hour that I spent with Kobe Bryant two years ago, I suppose the only small source of comfort for me is knowing that he died doing what he loved the most -- being a dad. Being a girl dad,"  Duncan recounted, voice cracking.

It was a statement that moved many #GirlDads to share their personal favorite reasons behind loving fatherhood.

"A daughter needs a dad, period," viewer Darin Thomas said. "Never get too lost in your day-to-day responsibilities that you don't make time for them... our daughters watch us. And in some cases, like Kobe and Gigi, our daughters even want to continue our legacies. And they can do it!  And I love it!"

WATCH: Elle Duncan's GirlDad piece inspired our own Darren Haynes to share his favorite moments of being a father, as well as sharing some of our favorite answers.

RELATED: Here's how you can donate to the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Foundation

So what does it meant to truly be that #GirlDad? We asked some fathers on our Facebook page to share some of their favorite moments. Here are their responses:

Credit: Courtesy: Darin Thomas
Proud father Darin Thomas said Kobe's relationship with his daughter Gianna "touched him greatly," enough to recreate their photoshoot with his own.

"Ambi and I wanted to pay tribute to Kobe and Gigi by duplicating this photo. There has always been something special about the father-daughter relationship and these recent events have shown us not to take that relationship for granted."

Credit: Courtesy: Ray Feldmann
Ray Feldmann participates in his daughter's Nutcracker Ballet every year.

"To be able to spend quality time with my daughter, watching her learn and experience life, is priceless. For the past four holiday seasons, I have danced with my daughter in The Nutcracker ballet, and I wouldn't trade those moments for the world. When you're on stage with your daughter and she catches your eye, there's nothing in the world as rewarding. #GirlDad "

Credit: Courtesy: Rodney Stevenson
#GirlDad Rodney Stevenson showed his appreciation for his two daughters.

"My favorite part of being a #girldad is seeing them grow to be young women with independent personalities and style!"

Credit: Courtesy: Haywood DeJarnette
Haywood DeJarnette showed his love and support for his daughter, Aja.

"I am a proud girl dad. One is 18 and the other 11. The best part of being a girl dad is seeing how much they need you as a security and safeguard in their life. Also sharing wisdom and helping them avoid making the same mistakes I already made. Our daughters need us dads! I was looking at baby pics the other day of them and said "Wow! Just yesterday you were 3 years old running around without a care in the world!" Rest in peace my brother Kobe and precious angel Gianni. Thank you for showing all us fathers out there how devoted you were to your daughters and how we should be the same way. "

Some are even VERY new to the #GirlDad game, like Mike Stanton

Credit: Courtesy: Mike Stanton
Mike Stanton is a new #GirlDad, of just one day!

"I've been a #GirlDad for a day and it's pretty awesome!"

Credit: Courtesy: Shawnell Beverly
Shawnell Beverly said her husband is one awesome #GirlDad.
Credit: Courtesy: Terry L. Vaughan
#GirlDad Terry L. Vaughan smiles with his daughter.
Credit: Courtesy: Darin Thomas
Darin Thomas' daughter Ambi's first big race. He said there was more than 100 runners and she was first!

"My daughter and I have a close relationship and this tragedy touched us deeply.  Although we both play basketball, I ran track in college.  I discovered early my daughter has a gift for running.  Just as Kobe was grooming his daughter in basketball I have been doing the same for Ambrielle in track.  It's our bond.  When we found out about this tragedy we immediately decided to take this picture and start this challenge.  We hoped that it would start a movement that keeps the #girldad love that Kobe and Gigi shared alive in #girldad relationships around the world. "

RELATED: DC remembers Kobe Bryant: Fans gather downtown to remember his legacy

RELATED: Kobe Bryant's death brings talk show hosts to tears: Watch their emotional tributes

RELATED: Kobe Bryant takes a bow on commemorative TIME magazine cover

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Kyley Schultz is a digital editor for WUSA9. Follow her on Twitter at @KyleyBSchultz