Remembering The Munich Air Disaster 56 Years On.

Published: Feb 06, 2014 06:51am EST
By Jason Bardwell, Sports Writer for Konsume Sports

Please Note: This article was updated Feb 06, 2014 @ 06:51am EST

 

Before I start I would like to say that I am a Manchester City fan and my blood runs as blue as any other City fan. I dislike Manchester United and enjoy the taunting songs we have for both their team and players, but I do not like nor participate in the Munich songs. I'll admit that I didn't know a great deal about the whole night before the 50th anniversary when the two Manchester sides would face off in retro shirts in honor of the event. With this in mind I felt I should do some research into who were involved that night. As many Manchester reporters died that night as United players. I couldn't find information about all of them but here is what I did find:

Players:


Duncan Edwards (21) 18 England caps, 5 goals. Recommended to Busby by Joe Mercer! Youngest post war England debutante until Owen broke that 43 years later(since broken by Rooney then Walcott). He suffered multiple leg fractures and severely damaged kidneys. Doctors gave him an artificial kidney but this reduced his bloods ability to clot and he began to bleed internally. Inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame in 2002. Died 15 days after the crash
 

Roger Bryne (28) Captain. Manchester born and won 33 caps for England. 

 

Mark Jones (24) England schoolboy international.

 

Tommy Taylor (26) 19 England caps, 16 goals. Also played for Barnsley

 

Eddie Coleman (21) Player.

 

Liam Whelan (22) Republic Of Ireland. 4 caps.

 

David Pegg (22) 1 England cap.

 

Geoff Bent (25) Player.
 

Staff:

Walter Crickmer Club secretary. Bert Whalley Chief coach, youth development Tom Curry Trainer Played for Utd and Newcastle.


Media:

Alf Clarke Journalist, Manchester Evening Chronicle. Don Davis Journalist, Manchester Guardian. George Follows Journalist, Daily Herald. Tom Jackson Journalist, Manchester Evening News. Archie Ledbrooke Journalist, Daily Mirror. Henry Rose Journalist Daily Express. Eric Thompson Journalist, Daily Mail
Frank Swift Journalist, News of the World (City player) 376 games for City from 1933-49 and 33 England caps (14 coming during war time). Named in the Football League 100 Legends in 1998 celebrating 100 seasons of league football in England (Alongside Meredith, Bell and Trautmann)
 

Others:

Cpt Kenneth Rayment, Co-pilot. Survived the crash but suffered multiple injuries and died three weeks later as a result of brain damage.
Bela Miklos, Travel agent. Willie Satinoff, Supporter. Tom Cable, Steward

Survived:
 

Players:

Bill Foulkes (26) Only played for Utd and only once for England. He has managed Witney Town, Chicago Sting, Tulsa Roughnecks, San Jose Earthquakes, I.L Bryn, Steinkjer FK, Lillestrom S.K, Viking Stavanger and F.C. Mazda.
 

Harry Gregg (24) went back into wreckage to rescue passengers.
 

Johnny Berry (31) Never played again. Played for Birmingham and Man Utd. Got four England caps. Suffered a fractured skull. When he woke up he was totally unaware of the plane crash. Died in 1994.
 

Jackie Blanchflower (24) Never played again. 12 Northern Irish caps. Suffered fractured pelvis and crushed kidneys. Died of cancer aged 65 in 1998.
 

Bobby Charlton (20) Scored twice the night before. World Cup winner. Played for Utd, Preston and Waterford. Managed Preston (player manager) and Waterford (caretaker). Knighted in 1994.
 

Ken Morgans (18) Never recovered his form after Munich Went on to play for Swansea and Newport Co.

Albert Scanlon (22) Suffered terrible head injuries, recovered and played well for several years at Utd, Newcastle, Lincoln and Mansfield. Was about to sign for Arsenal before the crash but that move was canceled.

Dennis Viollet (24) Striker 59-60 scored 32 goals. Played for Utd and Stoke. Got just the 2 caps for England. Came out of retirement to join NASL team Baltimore Bays. Then he returned to Britain to play for Witton Albion then Linfield. Went on to coach Preston and briefly Crewe in 1971. Moved to Florida to coach Jacksonville University Dolphins, then onto Richmond Kickers in the USISL before returning to Jacksonville to coach A-league side Jacksonville Cyclones. Died in 1999 age 65 from cancer in Florida.
He was inducted into the USL Hall of Fame in 2002 and now the annual University of North Florida/Jacksonville Uni soccer match has been contested for the Viollet cup since 1991.
 

Ray Wood (26) Suffered terrible head injuries and rarely played again. Played for Darlington, Utd, Huddersfield, Bradford and Barnsley before managing APOEL FC in 1971. Finished his career with 3 England caps. Has managed teams in the following countries: USA, Ireland, Zambia, Canada, Greece, Kenya, Kuwait, UAE. Also coached Cyprus and Kenyan national teams and NASL team LA Wolves. Died in 2002 aged 71.

 

Utd Staff:

Matt Busby (manager) read his last rites twice
 

Media and Others:

Frank Taylor Journalist Died in 2002
Peter Howard Photographer Died 1996
Ted Ellyard Photographer
Vera Lukic and baby- passengers rescued by Harry Gregg
Mrs Miklos Wife of travel agent
Mr Tomas Vic - passenger
James Thain - Captain. Blamed by German authorities for crash. Died 1975.
Rosmary Cheverton - Stewardess
Margaret Bellis - Stewardess
George Rodgers - radio officer

 

The European game actually took place in Belgrade and the team were traveling back to Manchester when it stopped in Munich to refuel. There were then two failed attempts to take off from the Munich runway and the players were removed from the plane.  

An interesting fact is that back in the airport terminal for barely ten minutes before the call to reconvene on the plane came and a number of passengers began to feel nervous. Charlton and team-mate Dennis Viollet swapped places with Tommy Taylor and David Pegg, who had decided they would be safer at the back of the plane. This would prove a fatal decision for Taylor and Pegg.

Slush on the runway made it hard for the aircraft to get up to the speed needed and so the plane skidded off the end of the runway before splitting up and resulting in the tragedy we now remember. 


So with this in mind, City fans remember Frank Swift but also members of the Manchester and national media as well as the people staffing the flight and players that we never got to see fulfill their role for England.

 

In 2011 a movie was released simply titled 'United'. Dougray Scott takes the role of Manager Matt Busby and ex Doctor Who, David Tennant, as Jimmy Murphy, the man who kept the side going in the aftermath. A very good movie, a must watch for not just United fans but soccer fans everywhere.

 


 

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