Chapecoense return to scene of plane crash which killed majority of their squad for first time in emotional scenes
Among those making the journey back to Colombia were ex-keeper Jackson Follmann, Alan Ruschel and Neto
THESE are the emotional pictures which show Chapecoense returning to the scene of the tragedy which all-but wiped out their club.
The Brazilian side take on Colombia’s Atletico Nacional in the Recopa Sudimericana final – South America’s equivalent of the Super Cup – on Wednesday.
Just five months ago, the plane carrying club members and journalists of Chapecoense crashed in Colombia en route to their Copa Sudamericana showdown against Nacional.
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The devastating accident killed 71 people, leaving just six survivors.
Since then, the club has rebuilt and amazingly progressed to another cup final.
Among those returning to the emotional scene is ex-keeper Jackson Follmann, whose leg was amputated following the disaster last November.
Writing on his Instagram, he posted: “Returning to this beloved country brings me many memories, one of them my rebirth.
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“I was reborn in Colombia, I am returning with a mixture of feelings. My gratitude will be eternal.”
Follmann’s fellow survivors, Alan Ruschel and Neto, also made the journey back to Colombia, surrounded by their families.
Club journalist Rafael Henzel can be seen welling up as he addresses the media, with his son kissing him on the cheek for support.
According to reports, a visit to the scene of the disaster is scheduled later today.
A fire truck poured water over the plane upon landing as a welcome sign by the locals.
The brave survivors and players were honoured by Medellin Mayor Federico Gutierrez as they arrived.
Gutierrrez said: “As with great sadness and tragedy comes an opportunity for a great friendship.
“We are brothers forever, they come here and feel they are local, as is what happened to Nacional in the last game in Chapeco.”