Liverpool honor 97th victim of Hillsborough disaster
TYROL, Austria (AP) — Liverpool players and staff observed 97 seconds of silence Thursday in honor of Andrew Devine, who died this week from long-term injuries sustained in the Hillsborough disaster.
The lifelong Liverpool fan died Tuesday at the age of 55 and the Liverpool coroner's court concluded he was “unlawfully killed,” making him the 97th fatality of Britain's worst sports disaster.
Before the 1989 FA Cup semifinal between Liverpool and Nottingham at Hillsborough Stadium, overcrowding led to a crush which killed 94 fans. Another fan died in hospital days later, and another victim died in 1993.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp led players and staff in a tribute to Devine at the team's preseason training camp in Tyrol, Austria.
“We found out that Andrew was in hospital last week and all of us hoped that he would make a recovery but it wasn’t to be,” Klopp told club media.
“It is a very sad moment for everyone who has Liverpool in their hearts and for many others besides,” he continued. “We have lost an incredible person, someone who showed us all what it is to fight and who refused to give in even when the expectation was that he could fight no more.”
Devine continued to attend games at Anfield despite his life-changing injuries.
“We are all very sad about this news. We are sad for Andrew, we are sad for his wonderful family who cared for him for so long and we are sad for the entire Liverpool family because another life has been cut short by Hillsborough,” Klopp said.
Devine's family said it was devastated by his death but also “blessed to have had Andrew with us for 32 years since the Hillsborough tragedy.”
“In the intervening years,” the family statement said, “Andrew has been a much loved son, brother and uncle. He has been supported by his family and a team of dedicated carers, all of whom devoted themselves to him. As ever, our thoughts are with all of those affected by Hillsborough.”
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