Grief at death of GAWA fan in Nice

Darren Rodgers.
Darren Rodgers.

First Minister, Arlene Foster and deputy First Minister, Martin McGuinness have expressed their deep condolences following the tragic death of Darren Rodgers who fell eight metres on to a French beach after Northern Ireland’s opening European Championship game in Nice on Sunday evening.

The Ministers said: “It was with great shock and sadness we learned this morning of the death of Darren Rodgers in Nice last night as the result of a tragic accident.

“The loss of a young life in these circumstances is truly heart breaking and our thoughts and prayers are with his friends and family at this extremely difficult time.

“This sad news is in stark contrast to the jovial carnival atmosphere just hours before at the game against Poland.

“Our fans have been fine ambassadors for the place we all call home and we encourage everyone to keep safe.”

The twenty-five-year-old lost his life after falling over a barrier from a promenade onto a hard pebble beach in Nice at around 2am on Monday morning, police said.

It is understood he was on his own at the time and had been in France for the opening fixture of Northern Ireland’s European Championship campaign against Poland.

Northern Ireland captain Steven Davis tweeted: “So sad to wake up to the tragic news that a Northern Ireland fan has died in Nice, thoughts with his family and friends.”