Ice hockey fans have paid tribute to Nottingham Panthers player Adam Johnson, who died after sustaining a serious injury during a match watched by thousands against the Sheffield Steelers.
Last night (November 4), one week on from the tragedy, a vigil was held at Utilita Arena Sheffield, where the incident happened. Many fans gathered at 8pm with floral tributes to the American player, whose team number was 47, before holding a minute’s silence.
In a statement, Sheffield Steelers wrote: “It was an emotional night in Sheffield as hockey returned to the city for the first time since last Saturday’s tragic events.
“Fans turned out to watch the Sheffield Steeldogs beat Romford Raiders 6-5 (after overtime).
“The pre-game included a special tribute to Adam Johnson and also a 47th minute acknowledgement as fans paid their respects.
“Following the game fans moved to the arena where they were joined by the Steelers players and coaches for a special vigil outside our home building.”
A vigil was also held last night at Nottingham's Motorpoint Arena, home to Nottingham Panther. Many supporters were in tears as they signed books of condolences on the ice. Hundreds of floral tributes to Johnson have also been left outside the Motorpoint Arena in Bolero Square.
Nottingham Panthers said the team's players and staff would spend Saturday afternoon privately reflecting on their memories of Johnson while signing the books of condolence. The club has also announced the creation of an official fundraising page to raise money for the Love for Hibbing and Hockey Memorial Fund - established in Johnson's memory.
Johnson's funeral will take place today (November 5) in the US, according to an obituary posted on the website of Dougherty Funeral Home in Hibbing, Minnesota.
The 29-year-old American was playing for the Panthers against Sheffield Steelers on October 28 when he was hit in the throat by an opponent's skate, causing a fatal injury.
About 8,000 fans watched in horror as attempts were made to save Johnson's life as he lay on the ice at Sheffield's Utilita Arena, shielded by fellow players.
On Friday, Sheffield's senior coroner Tanyka Rawden opened and adjourned an inquest into Johnson's death at Sheffield's Medico-Legal Centre.
Ms Rawden concluded the four minute-long hearing by saying she wanted to "take this opportunity to offer to his family, his friends and all those who knew him, my sincere condolences at this difficult time".
South Yorkshire Police has confirmed it is investigating the incident, but officers have said the inquiry "will take some time".