Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark

There will only be one post here today given the day that’s in it.

I was thinking about writing something long and involved and with my own memories of the day but that’s not important in any way to anyone but me.

20 years ago today 96 people lost their lives on a beautiful April day. They left their homes to head to what should have been a showpiece of what was good about English football at the time and instead never came home.

I was 15 the day I watched this unfold on live television and it’s stayed with me ever since. My lifelong relationship with Liverpool FC has always been more than about just sport, for many of us Liverpool is about family and nothing brings a family together like tragedy.

It’s why I cry every time I sing You’ll Never Walk Alone; the lyrics are so much more than just a football song. Listen to them. Every since April 15th 1989 it’s been about loss and hope and being together for others under the same banner in the face of enormous tragedy.

Others who have lost family, friends and children. Everything.

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14 thoughts on “Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark

  1. Fair play Rick, a heart-felt piece that sums up the feelings of most fans – it’s still painful to look back on that day. I was 15 too and 20 years on the thought of my son or daughters being caught up in something like this chills me to the bone.
    The 96 will never, ever be forgotten. YNWA.

  2. The thing that got to me was there was only one ambulance. Then the official reaction. Then the real story.
    And the outpouring of grief.

    Rick, I was involved with the Radio One production of Carousel.
    Not very interesting I know, but “You’ll Never Walk Alone” is from that musical, and RTE own the recording (and probably the broadcasting) rights.

    If you ask nicely, you might be able to get a copy from the archives and be freely able to play it on the show.

  3. I was 8 at the time, but can still remember reading the papers in the days afterwards. 20 years on and the families are still fighting for justice.

    There was a single trumpet playing you’ll never walk alone at the Munich game last night, a class act.

  4. It’s not only Liverpool that remembers and mourns this day. Despite the sometimes vitriolic and disgraceful chants that go on, I think the whole football family takes time to reflect on this tragedy.

    As a Manchester United fan, I also feel tears in my eyes whenever I hear “You’ll Never Walk Alone”. I think last night’s rendition at Stamford Bridge was typical of the indomitable spirit of the Scouse supporter.

    If there is one silver lining to this cloud, it is the improvements in crowd safety that have been introduced over the last two decades. Ensuring ongoing safety at sports grounds and other large events is the greatest tribute we can pay to those who lost their lives on that day.

  5. I’m not a Liverpool fan, but my Dad is, and always has been. I was only 4 when it happened, but it still hits a nerve whenever April 15th comes around.

  6. Something that should never have happened and like the Stardust disaster, a lot of unanswered questions that need to be answered so that the relatives can have closure on this very tragic event that should have been a joyous day.

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