Footballer who survived Colombian plane tragedy was reading Bible

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A footballer who survived the Colombian plane tragedy was reading a Bible passage about ‘being safe in the shadow of your wings’ before the crash.

The bible, belonging to Chapecoense centre back Helio Neto, was found at the scene of the crash and has been handed to the footballer’s wife.

His wife said Neto, who is still fighting for his life in hospital, is deeply religious and takes the religious scripture with him everywhere.

A bookmark had been inserted next to Psalm 63, which talks about being safe in the shadow of God’s wings and about thinking of God in bed.

Psa 63:1  A Psalm of David, when he was in the wilderness of Judah. O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;
Psa 63:2  To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the sanctuary.
Psa 63:3  Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee.
Psa 63:4  Thus will I bless thee while I live: I will lift up my hands in thy name.
Psa 63:5  My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips:
Psa 63:6  When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches.
Psa 63:7  Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice.
Psa 63:8  My soul followeth hard after thee: thy right hand upholdeth me.
Psa 63:9  But those that seek my soul, to destroy it, shall go into the lower parts of the earth.
Psa 63:10  They shall fall by the sword: they shall be a portion for foxes.
Psa 63:11  But the king shall rejoice in God; every one that sweareth by him shall glory: but the mouth of them that speak lies shall be stopped.

His wife, Simone, said Neto has a lot of faith in God and takes the bible with him on all his trips.

Simone had previously told how her husband had told her on the morning of the flight that he had had a dream it had crashed.

As she received the book, Simone said: ‘It’s the first thing he takes when he travels, and here are his annotations, I’m very grateful to have it back.’

Neto has so far undergone extensive surgery on his lungs, skull, knees and wrists.

His family say they hope he will make a full recovery.

A total of 71 people lost their lives when the British-made Avro RJ85 aircraft came down en route to Medellin, where Brazilian side Chapecoense were due to play in the Copa Sudamericana final.


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