The father of late footballer Emiliano Sala has died of a heart attack four months after his son was killed in a plane crash.
Horacio Sala passed away from a heart attack in his bed at his home in Argentina this morning, local media reported.
His 28-year-old son Emiliano was flying to Cardiff in January following his transfer from French side Nantes when the Piper Malibu plane piloted by David Ibbotson crashed into the English Channel, killing them both.
His father Horacio has been grief-struck ever since, telling of his pain in an interview at his home days after the crash.
The former truck driver told Argentine TV: ‘I cannot believe it. This is a dream. A bad dream. I am desperate.’
He described his son as ‘small town humble boy’, adding: ‘He was a lad who always fought for what he had.’
Mr Sala’s death was today confirmed by local politician Julio Muller, who said paramedics had rushed to his home but were unable to save him.
Mr Muller told local radio station La Red: ‘2019 doesn’t let up in shocking us with news in this town.
‘At 5 o’clock in the morning, the lady, his wife, rang me and she was very upset.
‘The doctors were there but when I arrived at their home, he had already died.’
Striker Emiliano Sala became the Cardiff record signing on January 19 but then died in a plane crash two days later.
The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) found in its preliminary report in February that pilot Mr Ibbotson was not licensed to fly fee-paying passengers and the plane itself was not registered to undertake commercial flights.
Records have since shown that Ibbotson was also not licensed to fly at night.