The Chapecoense players who were not able to travel with the rest of their teammates were in shock after hearing about the fatal plane crash that killed almost all of the members of the Brazilian football club and their delegates. Following the crash, the remaining players converted their locker room into a shrine to memorialize their teammates.
The Chapecoense team was traveling from Brazil to face off against Medellin's Atletico Nacional for the final two-game match of the Copa Sudamericana. On Monday, the players, along with reporters and other staff members of the team boarded a British Aerospace 146 plane of the LaMia airline, Telegraph reported.
Videos and photos posted by the players on their social media accounts showed them having fun as the plane prepared to take off.
However, at about 10 pm, the plane lost radar contact and declared an emergency after experiencing electrical failure. A few moments later, the plane crashed in Colombia, killing over 70 passengers.
During the retrieval operations, emergency workers were able to pull out survivors from the crash. These include defend Alan Ruschel, goalkeepers Marcos Danilo and Jackson Follman, a journalist, a flight crew member and a delegate from the team. Danilo, however, died a few moments after he was rescued.
A total of nine members of the Chapecoense team were not able to travel with the football club for the upcoming match due to various reasons. This includes Matheus Saroli, the son of the team's coach. According to BBC, he was not able to fly with the team because he lost his passport.
Goalie Marcel Boeck also stayed in Brazil because it was his birthday. Alejandro Martinuccio, on the other hand, did not fly with the team due to an injury.
Following the crash, the remaining members of Chapecoense visited their locker room to pay tribute to their teammates through flowers, letters and shrines. The team also changed the color of its crest from green to black due to the tragedy. Their opponent, Atletico Nacional, also did the same with their crest and launched the hashtag #EstaMosConChapecoense, which translates to "We are with Chapecoense."
Currently, aviation officials are going through the plane's blackbox as part of their investigation regarding the actual cause of the crash.