Extract from kenny's book - Kenny and hillsborough

Hillsborough remembrance and related information

Postby Igor Zidane » Mon Sep 13, 2010 3:24 pm

http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Ke ... 78235.html

Retracing the steps and memories of April 15, 1989 is a soul-destroying task that fills me with pain and anger.

Twenty-one years have passed, but I can hardly bring myself to write or say its name. Hillsborough haunts me still.

I strongly believe that it was an accident waiting to happen. Nothing can deflect me from my ­steadfast opinion that the Hillsborough disaster was rooted in bad management.

Nobody could have anticipated such a tragedy but when problems materialised, when Liverpool fans began arriving late through no fault of their own, those in charge should have reacted better.

“They’re killing us, Bruce, they’re killing us.” Just writing those words – what Bruce Grobbelaar could hear the fans shouting behind his goal – chills me. At 3.06pm, a policeman finally strode on to the pitch to tell referee Ray Lewis to stop the game.

Any chance of the game being played disappeared in my eyes when I briefly went back on the pitch, stepping 10 yards over the touchline and witnessing what seemed a scene from a war-zone. Although I never realised then the extent of the loss of life, the full gravity of the situation began hitting home.
I’d gone on to the pitch looking for my son Paul, who’d attended the game with Roy Evans’s son, Stephen, and Alan Brown, a friend.

When I began to realise the extent of the problems at the Leppings Lane End, I became frantic with worry. Paul, Stephen and Alan had to go through Leppings Lane to reach their places. If they’d arrived late, they could have got caught up in it.

Suddenly seeing Paul walking across the pitch, my heart leapt. Thank you, God. I never said anything to Paul, just greeting him with a huge hug. I was lucky and Paul was lucky – all around us, people were dying. Thank God they’d passed through Leppings Lane before the central pens began trapping fans.

I’ve still never talked with Paul about Hillsborough. The emotion is too raw. I just can’t imagine how I’d have coped if my son had died, so I try to block out the awful thought.

At 5.30pm, we climbed wearily into the coach for the journey back to Liverpool, probably passing distressed parents speeding towards Sheffield. Throughout my years at Liverpool, the bus was a place of noise and happiness, filled with banter as we headed to training or returned from a successful expedition with a trophy on the dashboard. Not now. Silence and misery were our companions.

Every player was lost in thought, searching for answers. I sat there numb, holding my wife Marina’s hand, thinking of my family and wondering whether I knew any of those fans now lying in that morgue at Hillsborough, or in the emergency ward of a Sheffield hospital. As a club with deep roots in the community, with a strong bond between team and terrace, everybody feared having lost a friend.

On Monday morning, Marina telephoned all the wives, to see how they could help and I contacted the players. They couldn’t wait to get to Anfield.

It became a place of solace for the families, a haven for them to come to talk and grieve. The families were so strong, often dealing with the tragic circumstances by making wry remarks about their lost loved ones’ obsession with Liverpool.

At that stage the parents didn’t have a body to grieve over. Many of the bodies were not immediately returned to the bereaved – an unbelievably inhumane decision that still rankles. They’d seen their loved one’s body through glass in

the morgue, in that gym at Hillsborough. The police even retained clothing and personal effects. Why? So many questions have still to be answered.

Standing in the lounge, trying to comfort the ­relatives, I just couldn’t take in the sheer horror of the stories being related. Later that day the players boarded the coach for the sad return to Sheffield.

At 3pm we arrived at the North General Hospital for an experience that was strange, humbling and distressing. I saw one kid, Lee Nichol, only 14, hooked up to a life-support machine. I stared at him, not understanding why somebody without a mark or bruise could be clinically dead. Not a mark on him. It didn’t make sense. Lee was pulled alive from the crush on the Leppings Lane End but had slipped into a coma. He died later – the 95th to pass away. Hillsborough was Lee’s first away game. Shocking.

Moving between the wards, I was led to the bedside of 20-year-old Sean Luckett, who was in a coma. His mother sat anxiously by his side.

“Sean, here’s Kenny Dalglish to see you,” said a doctor. “It’s Kenny Dalglish.” Suddenly, Sean’s eyes opened. Amazing. I couldn’t believe it. “Hello, Sean, I know you’re going to make it through,” I said.

Sean was stirring, waking from his coma. His mother let out a cry and leant forward over him.

“Listen, this is a special moment for you, I’ll leave you to it,” I said and hurried from the room.

Some people credited me with having an influence on Sean’s recovery. I know the mind works in strange ways and some medics argue that, in a coma, it reacts to words, but I thought it was just coincidence that he woke up then. Whatever the cause, I was just happy Sean was back with us.

When Marina and I drove into Anfield on the morning of Wednesday, April 19, we found the staff and the families enraged by a piece in The Sun.

Its infamous front-page headline, “THE TRUTH”, caused hurt and outrage by accusing fans of pick-pocketing the dying and urinating on the bodies.

Unbelievable. Liverpool punters went ballistic, some of them burning the paper on news-stands, others coming to Anfield to talk about their anger.The following day, the paper’s editor Kelvin MacKenzie rang the club.

“Kenny, we have a bit of a problem,” he said.


“How can we resolve it?”

“See that headline you put in, ‘THE TRUTH’? Just have another one, as big: ‘WE LIED. SORRY.’”

“Kenny, we can’t do that.”

“I can’t help you then.” I put down the phone.

He simply didn’t realise the offence he’d caused to a grieving city. A few minutes later, the governor of Walton Prison phoned: “Look, Kenny, the inmates are getting really restless with the stuff that’s been in the papers. Can you come and speak to them?”

“OK, I’ll be there at nine tomorrow.” Liverpool was a city in torment and I had to do everything to bring some calm and hope. If there was a threat of a riot in Walton Prison, I had to go there. Entering the prison was deeply unsettling. I heard the door slam shut, the clank of keys and the quiet words of prisoners working on the lawn: “How you doing, Kenny?” Badly.

I was led into the chapel. The inmates sat there, totally silent. Suddenly, they began clapping, which startled me. It seemed they just wanted to demonstrate their respect towards Liverpool Football Club and the way we were trying to deal with Hillsborough.

The governor took me to one side. “Kenny, they’ve all seen the paper so anything you can say to pacify them would be magnificent. If you can just reassure them.”

I tried. “Listen,” I said, “what you’ve read is not ‘The Truth’. That never happened. Please, I know it’s difficult for you in here and you want to be with your loved ones outside, but please stay calm and know that Liverpool are working night and day to help the families.”

Being inside emphasised the damage wrought by one paper’s lies. Their vile insinuation emanated from the word of an unidentified policeman. Well, if they or the police had proof of mass drunkenness, show us the evidence. They couldn’t because the claim was fabricated and was dismissed by Lord Chief Justice Taylor.

Liverpool began burying its dead. Marina and I went to four funerals in one day. The last one I attended was as difficult as the first. I didn’t understand how the relatives had the fortitude to keep going, but they did.

Resilience defined Liverpool, still does. A great community spirit united the city in the aftermath of the Hillsborough tragedy.

Returning to Anfield, I saw the Kop covered, flowers spreading towards the halfway line. So many people visited. Neil Kinnock arrived with no warning, no fuss, just queuing, leaving some flowers then departing. He struck me as genuine.

Talking to the Press, I said the Kop was “the saddest and most beautiful sight I have ever seen”. “Why beautiful?” people asked. Why? Because the tributes came from all over the world, from fans of other clubs and from people who’d never before set foot in Anfield. My view of the police changed after Hillsborough. I felt no animosity towards the police as an institution, solely towards individual officers who have still failed to admit responsibility for their calamitous decisions.

The Establishment tried to protect itself. Any other club might have let it go, but never Liverpool. The people want somebody to acknowledge their guilt. If the police accepted responsibility, the floodgates would open for compensation and that’s the big issue. So the Establishment is going to block them. Trying to discover whether there was a cover-up has seemed impossible, until Andy Burnham came along. This spring, thanks to him, a panel was formed to examine these reports, a huge step forward in the fight for justice for the 96 who died.

Recalling the events has proved a painful experience. Hillsborough changed me, changed the sport I love, and changed my Anfield home.

3EXTRACted by Brian Reade from My Liverpool Home: Then and Now by Kenny Dalglish (Hodder & Stoughton, September 16, 2010. © Kenny Dalglish)

Cried me eyes out reading that.
Igor Zidane
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Postby metalhead » Mon Sep 13, 2010 4:04 pm

No words can describe what happened, RIP
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Postby Benny The Noon » Thu Sep 16, 2010 5:20 pm

Speechless - Brings tears to my eyes .


Justice one day will be given
Benny The Noon

Postby Greavesie » Wed Apr 13, 2011 3:43 pm

All round the fields of Anfield Road
Where once we watched the King Kenny play (and could he play!)
Stevie Heighway on the wing
We had dreams and songs to sing
'Bout the glory, round the Fields of Anfield Road

JFT 96 - Gone but never forgotten
YNWA 15/4/1989
God Bless You All
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Postby RedSi35 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 8:20 pm

Christ........Harrowing :(

One day we will have justice
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Postby metalhead » Thu Apr 14, 2011 4:17 pm

read the extract again, really can't say anything but justice for the 96
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Postby Ola Mr Benitez » Thu Apr 14, 2011 4:55 pm

RIP our 96

JFT96 - Gone but not forgotten
Our job is simple, to support the club, not just parts of the club that are easy to support, but every one who plays a part, that includes ALL players.  We are stronger when we are all walking in the same direction. Walk On
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