Kobe’s death leaves a legacy – and an investigation

As the world mourns the shocking loss of NBA legend Kobe Bryant, a mysterious virus spreads across the globe.

It’s Ashley with the news you need to know. 

But first, pour one out for the Earth: Climate change threatens the world’s wine supply, a new study says.

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Did weather cause the crash that killed Kobe Bryant?

Details continue to emerge about the helicopter crash that killed NBA legend Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others in California on Sunday. Experts questioned why the pilot flew in foggy conditions. As fans mourn the sudden death of one of the NBA’s iconic athletes, authorities are in the early stages of investigating the helicopter crash and its potential causes. Visibility was so poor Sunday morning that the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s and Los Angeles Police Departments grounded their choppers. It remains unclear if weather played a role in the crash. Here’s more coverage of tributes and details after the tragic passing of Bryant: 

  • Kobe Bryant will be honored posthumously this year as a 2020 inductee in the Basketball Hall of Fame. 
  • Here are the nine victims of the Calabasas helicopter crash, including Bryant.
  • The final interview with Bryant offered a window into the NBA legend’s motivation to be memorable. 
  • Carmelo Anthony, Doc Rivers, Derek Jeter, Barack Obama, President Donald Trump and Jerry West were among those offering condolences and tributes.

Jan 26, 2020; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Fans mourn the loss of NBA legend Kobe Bryant outside of the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Mandatory Credit: Harrison Hill-USA TODAY (Photo: Harrison Hill-USA TODAY via Imagn Content Services, LLC)

Coronavirus: Trump says US ‘strongly on watch’ as China deaths rise

The United States is in “very close communication” with China, which grapples with a new coronavirus, President Trump said Monday. China’s death toll rose Monday to 81, and confirmed cases across the nation expanded to more than 2,700 since the coronavirus was discovered last month. The epicenter of the outbreak is Wuhan, a city of 11 million people, but more than 40 cases have been confirmed in a dozen other countries, including five in the USA.

  • Coronavirus rattles stock markets: Here’s why – and who’s getting hit the hardest.
  • Joe Biden writes for USA TODAY: Trump is the worst possible leader to deal with a coronavirus outbreak.

Global health authorities monitor the spread of a new coronavirus. (Photo: USA TODAY)

What everyone’s talking about

  • Today is Holocaust Remembrance Day. One woman tells the story of when her family tried to poison her during the Holocaust. 
  • One of Harvey Weinstein’s accusers sobbed as she described trying to fight him off: “I’m being raped.” 
  • Something far deadlier than the Wuhan coronavirus lurks near you, right here in America. 
  • Terry Crews says his wife is the only one “I have to please” amid backlash over “AGT'” comments.

Anyone adding ‘The Room Where It Happened’ to their reading lists? ?‍♀️ 

Former national security adviser John Bolton’s upcoming book includes some brow-raising allegations tied to President Trump’s impeachment trial. In the manuscript for the book, Bolton said Trump told him he did not wish to release military aid to Ukraine until the country helped with investigations that could be damaging to Democrats, according to media reports. That’s the same military aid at the center of Trump’s impeachment trial that the president insisted was not held up for political purposes. Monday, Trump sharply denied Bolton’s reported claims. Regardless, the book ramped up Democrats’ call for additional witnesses in the impeachment trial.

  • Who is John Bolton, the former national security adviser who is a focus in Trump’s impeachment trial?
  • Bombshell book: What we know about Bolton’s allegations about Trump and Ukraine.

John Bolton, right, served as President Donald Trump's national security adviser. (Photo: Evan Vucci, AP)

Alabama fire chief confirms 8 deaths after fire destroys 35 boats

A blaze tore through an Alabama dock Monday, killing at least eight people and torching dozens of boats as people leaped into the frigid Tennessee River to escape the roaring fire. Thirty-five boats, houseboats and pontoon vessels burned in the fire. Some were docked for recreation, but other boats were homes for some people. Jackson County Chief Sheriff’s Deputy Rocky Harnen said efforts to find all the boats, account for all the missing, identify those killed and notify families could take several days.

A fire burns on a dock where at least 35 vessels, many of them houseboats, were destroyed by fire Jan. 27 in Scottsboro, Ala. Fire Chief Gene Necklaus confirmed fatalities in the fire. (Photo: DeWayne Patterson, AP)

Real quick 

  • Prince Andrew has provided “zero” assistance to U.S. authorities in the investigation into accused child sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein.
  • The Supreme Court ruled that the Trump administration can block thousands of immigrants from receiving public assistance while legal challenges continue.
  • The mystery crash in Afghanistan was a manned U.S. surveillance aircraft, officials say.

You should see Billie Eilish in a crown, because she needs one

Billie Eilish, the audacious teen who’s taken the music world by storm, swept the Grammy Awards on Sunday with wins in all four major categories, including best new artist, record and song and album of the year. What else happened? Camila Cabello and her dad are father/daughter goals; Demi Lovato is back and stronger than ever; and basketball legend Kobe Bryant and rapper Nipsey Hussle received stunning tributes. Plus, a whole lot more: 

  • Brutally honest reviews and rankings of every Grammy performance.
  • Lizzo and Ariana Grande chatting, plus more moments you didn’t see on TV.
  • The most over-the-top Grammys fashion: You seriously have to see some of these outfits. 
  • Eilish gave Grande a shout-out at the Grammys, but Grande’s fans say she was snubbed.

Billie Eilish is the first person to sweep the four major Grammys – album, record and song of the year, plus best new artist – since Christopher Cross in 1981. (Photo: DAN MacMEDAN/USA TODAY)

A break from the news

  • The 5 best Amazon deals you can get this Monday. 
  • Netflix remains adamantly against ads (I give you my thanks, Netflix). Here’s why. 
  • Here’s what you need to consider whether you file your tax return in late January – or mid-April. 

This is a compilation of stories from across the USA TODAY Network.

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