Bodies of Brazilian footballers killed in Colombia plane crash reach home
December 3rd, 2016 at 8:41 pm
Bodies of Brazilian footballers killed in Colombia plane crash reach home

International desk – The bodies of 71 people killed in a plane crash that wiped out a Brazilian football team are returning home, according to BBC report.

More than 100,000 people are expected to attend a memorial service at Chapecoense’s stadium in Chapeco.

Just six people survived Monday’s crash outside Medellin, Colombia, where they were due to play a regional final.

The cause of the crash is unclear. But recording has emerged of the pilot asking the control tower for priority to land because he was out of fuel.

Brazilian President Michel Temer greeted the planes at the airport.

He is not expected to go to the ceremony at the stadium, reportedly amid concerns about protests taking place.

Fireworks exploded as the first of two military planes arrived in Chapeco early on Saturday.

On Friday, hundreds of people had lined the road in Medellin to pay their final respects. The victims include 64 Brazilians, five Bolivians, a Venezuelan and a Paraguayan.

Nineteen of the dead were players with Chapecoense, and many more were support staff and journalists covering the team.

The bodies will be carried during a funeral procession through Chapeco on Saturday, ending with a ceremony at the team’s stadium.

Many fans started to gather in heavy rain outside the stadium early on Saturday, with some having arrived on Friday.

“I will only really believe it when we see the coffins and the families,” one of the fans, Pamela Lopes, told Reuters. “At first there was commotion, but now a great sadness has set in.”

A minute’s silence will be held before every football match this weekend, and football’s world governing body Fifa, whose head Gianni Infantino will attend the service, requested that all players wear black armbands in remembrance.

The team has been described as having “a fairy story with a tragic ending”.

It only won promotion to the country’s top division in 2014, but was on its way to the first leg of the Copa Sudamericana final in Medellin when the plane went down, according to BBC.