Neto said that he and some of the other passengers started praying. “I first thought that God would perform a miracle and everyone would survive because we would go down in a flat place,” he admitted. “I didn’t imagine that there was a mountain in front of the plane. But when I heard only the sound of wind, I realized that the worst would happen.” And the worst did happen at 9:58 p.m., when the plane collided with a hill called Gerro Gordo, tearing the fuselage apart.
It’s hard to imagine anyone surviving such a crash, but somehow seven people were pulled out of the wreckage alive, including four Chapecoense team members. Star goalkeeper Danilo died soon after arriving in hospital, however, while his backup, Jakson Follman, had his leg amputated. Defender Alan Ruschel required spine surgery and Neto suffered serious injuries that required him to be put into an induced coma for nine days.