Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha was a lot more than an owner of Leicester City football club
On Saturday 27th October 2018 at around 8.30pm the well-known Leicester City helicopter took off from the King Power Stadium.
Just seconds into the flight the aircraft got into difficulty and spun out of control and crashed just outside the ground.
Leicester City fans and the footballing community across the world became united and sent their thoughts and prayers for everyone on board the Helicopter.
With everyone praying for a miracle and waking hoping it was a bad nightmare, it has now been confirmed that the chairman, two members of staff, the pilot and the pilots girlfriend on board the aircraft sadly died.
Leicester fans have started to lay flowers at the stadium first thing Sunday morning.
Flowers being laid outside of turnstiles 54/57 here at The King Power Stadium. pic.twitter.com/tHYnm8AfGQ
— Ian Stringer (@StringerSport) October 28, 2018
Who is Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha?
Born 3rd April 1957, Vichai was a self-made billionaire businessman who was the founder, owner and chairman of King Power duty free with a net worth of £3.8bn, making him the fifth richest person in Thailand.
He purchased Leicester in 2010 for £39m, pumping millions into the club to pay off debts, improve the squad and lead the Foxes to a what seemed an impossible 5000-1 Premier League win.
Vichai really did make a sporting miracle happen which grabbed attention all over the world.
He would personally visit training sessions chatting to the players and smiling for pictures with the fans.
After winning the Premier League he purchased the 5000-1 champions their very own £100k BMW I8 as a thank-you.
He also took the players to a meal of caviar and fine wine in a top west London restaurant and footed the bill. Afterwards he gave each player and staff member a £10,000 casino chip to gamble at a private casino nearby.
Vichai was a generous giving man, regularly travelling with City supporters to and from games on the train.
In 2016 he donated £2m of his own money towards a brand new children’s hospital in Leicester. He handed over the money at the start of a £10m campaign to boost the initiative.
Just earlier this year he donated £1m to the LCFC Foxes Foundation, which seeks charities to benefit from the fundraising of the foundation.
Aside from his brilliant and generous charity work, Vichai never stopped giving to the loyal City fans.
Frequently Leicester fans would be given gifts – all paid for by generous Srivaddhanaprabha.
Recently he announced that all fans travelling to Cardiff would receive a free breakfast and Leicester City scarf at the match paid for by himself.
There really is not an owner who has been so generous to not only his clubs fans, but also the local community.
Before every match Vichai leaves a bottle of whisky and glasses in the King Power’s memorial garden for families to toast lost ones. The helicopter arrived as we were leaving. The best owner a club could hope for.
— Nick Mullins (@andNickMullins) October 27, 2018
It is a dark, dark day in Leicester and the clubs history from this tragic event and words cannot describe how much Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha will be missed and how much all Leicester fans thank him for helping us to achieve the impossible.
Mr Chairman thank-you so much for all you have done for the club and City of Leicester.
We hope to see a statue of you outside the ground soon.
A book of condolence, which will be shared with the Srivaddhanaprabha family, will be opened at King Power Stadium from 8am on Tuesday 30 October for supporters wishing to pay their respects.
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