Latin America

Rafael Henzel, Chapecoense plane crash survivor, dies after football game

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One of the six survivors of the plane crash that killed most of the Brazilian football team Chapecoense in 2016 has died after suffering a heart attack.

Brazilian journalist Rafael Henzel, 45, collapsed while playing football with friends on Tuesday. He was taken to hospital but died shortly after.

Chapecoense described him as a "symbol of the club's reconstruction".

The plane carrying 77 people, including 19 Chapecoense players, crashed in Colombia after running out of fuel.

A highly respected journalist, Henzel returned to his job at a radio station in the southern city of Chapecó after recovering from the 28 November 2016 crash.

"Throughout his brilliant career, Rafael told the story of Chapecoense," the Chapecó club said in a tribute on its website (in Portuguese).

"The green and white pages of this institution will always remember his example of overcoming [adversity] and everything he did."

Henzel was scheduled to cover the match between Chapecoense and Criciúma for national tournament Copa do Brasil on Wednesday. Chapecoense has asked Brazil's football association to postpone it.

The plane carrying Chapecoense was flying from Santa Cruz de la Sierra, in Bolivia, to Medellin, in Colombia, where the team were due to play in the final of the Copa Sudamericana.

Speaking to the BBC a few weeks after the crash, Henzel said the passengers had no warning of the impending crash.

"When we were 10-15 minutes away from landing, the engines went off because the plane had ran out of fuel… I putRead More – Source

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