Grieving Plymouth fan thanks Liverpool staff as son dies during game

Kevin May Image copyright Kevin May
Image caption Kevin May hopes fans will join in a tribute of applause on the 25th minute of the replay

A Plymouth Argyle fan who was told his son had died unexpectedly during Sunday's FA Cup match with Liverpool has thanked police and staff who eased his distress.

Kevin May, 53, from Plymouth, was texted by daughter Stacey during the game that his son Daniel, 25, had died.

Daniel was quadriplegic, blind and had cerebral palsy since an operation aged six months.

Distraught dad Mr May was taken to a quiet room away from the crowd.

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'Crumpled in heap'

The first call was from eldest son Terry that Daniel, who lived in Surrey with his mother, was in intensive care at Royal Surrey County Hospital, in Guildford.

"The news was totally unexpected, Daniel was severely epileptic and there was always a risk, but it was a bolt out of the blue", he said.

He tried to tell a policeman at the turns Liverpool's Anfield ground "but the words didn't come out".

The policeman, he only knows as Graham, led Mr May into the club where a member of staff made him tea and "let me rabbit on and on about my son and just listened to me".

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption A policeman guided Mr May out of the crowd after he heard the shock news

Referring to the two men as his "guardian angels", he said: "I calmed down with the help of these two big Scousers I'd only known for half an hour, but they were great."

He was shown to his seat when he got a text from Stacey, saying: "He's gone." Daniel had died of a heart attack.

Looking for somewhere to escape the crowd, a policeman guided him to the police office where he "crumpled in a heap on a table with my head in my arms".

There Graham and an Anfield employee both put their arms around him "in a show of pure human kindness, a credit to Scousers and Liverpool FC as well as Liverpool police".

Image copyright Kevin May
Image caption Daniel was airlifted to hospital in Guildford on Sunday

Mr May recounted his experience on Facebook to offer his "sincerest thanks to them both for the care and the kind words they afforded me at my time of need".

He said he was "absolutely blown away", by the response to his post and has since managed to speak to Graham and thank him personally.

"We spoke for about 40 minutes, it felt like I had known him all my life."

He hopes that fans will join in a tribute of applause on the 25th minute of the third round replay on Wednesday.

"The fact that people are thinking about Daniel is such an uplift," he said.

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