The deaths, survivors and aftermath of Munich air disaster in pictures, that killed 23 individuals in including eight a plane carrying the Manchester United team crashed on February 6 1958.
The Munich air disaster occurred on 6 February 1958 when British European Airways flight 609 crashed on its third attempt to take off from a slush-covered runway at Munich-Riem Airport, West Germany. The disaster killed 23 individuals including 8 players of Manchester United, who were returning from a European Cup match in Belgrade, former Yugoslavia, against Red Star Belgrade. The match was drawn 3–3 at the Partizan Stadion but it was enough to send United to the semi-finals of the prestigious European Cup.
Seven of Manchester United’s players died immediately during the fateful crash (Geoff Bent, Roger Byrne, Eddie Colman, Mark Jones, David Pegg, Tommy Taylor and Liam Whelan), and their prolific prodigy Duncan Edwards died from his injuries on 21 February at the Rechts der Isar Hospital in Munich after 15 days of battle. Right winger Johnny Berry and versatile center-half Jackie Blanchflower were both injured so severely that they never played again. United’s manager Sir Matt Busby was in the flight as well and was seriously injured and had to stay in hospital for more than two months after the crash.
After the crash, United only won one league game that shattered title challenge and they eventually fell to ninth place in the league. In the European Cup semi-finals, they managed to beat Milan at Old Trafford but were demolished 4–0 at the San Siro. Sir Matt Busby, who survived the crash, had returned later and continued his managerial duties the next season (1958–59), and eventually ten years later won the European Cup, beating Benfica in 1968. Sir Bobby Charlton and Bill Foulkes were the only two crash survivors who lined up in that team.
“I thought, ‘Why me? Why am I here with nothing happened to me other than a little gash on the head’ and all these other friends had been killed? – Sir Bobby Charlton
The golden generation, managed by legendary Matt Busby, who were fondly known as the Busby babes will never be forgotten.