Author Topic: Survivors: Talk about it, share it, we'll try to help  (Read 194780 times)

Offline spen71

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #80 on: January 28, 2007, 09:55:12 pm »
Just an update.  Things are not good in my house at the moment.  My wife (incidentally half american-half londoner, so maybe not that cluedup) is pissed off as I am drinking too much.  Tried to talk but it was too hard in the end.

I have told my daughter a bit more about that day (a little bit easier) and I have requested a copy of Jimmy Mcgoverns Hillsborough.  Going to show them it and explain it.  It is going to hurt me but I have to go through it.

Then it is a day out down Walton Breck Road and to the memorial.  Probably lots of tears but I am hoping it is going to help.

Offline Maggie May

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #81 on: January 28, 2007, 10:12:24 pm »
Do you try to explain to your wife why you're drinking?  Preferably when you're sober or not immediately during or following a row after she's objected?  Try laying off the ale for a couple of days and then sitting down for a proper talk. 

And I've asked you before to consider your children's ages.  Are they ready to see Hillsborough?  I'm sure its going to hurt you, but have your considered the effect it may have on them - not only the film itself, but seeing your reaction to it?    Why not watch it yourself and decide whether to take it further?
Rather a day as a lion than a lifetime as a sheep.

I can only be nice to one person a day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look too good either.
I tried being reasonable.  I didn't like it.  Old enough to know better.  Young enough not to give a fuck.

Offline spen71

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #82 on: January 28, 2007, 10:38:42 pm »
Cheers Mags, my eldest is 16 and pretty clued up, he is not daft and we talk quite a lot.  Next one will be 14 on April 23rd and wants to know so much so I am just going to show it.  I  have just told my wife that I am getting the DVD and she said she would wants to watch it.  Maybe we can finally talk about it as it is driving a big wedge between it.

It is strange to say this but as much as the Arsenal game brought up awareness about the campaign but I wish I had never watched.  That is not a slur on anybody of the 96 and all the surviours but it is has dredged to many memories up.


Offline Maggie May

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #83 on: January 29, 2007, 10:55:50 am »
Cheers Mags, my eldest is 16 and pretty clued up, he is not daft and we talk quite a lot.  Next one will be 14 on April 23rd and wants to know so much so I am just going to show it.  I  have just told my wife that I am getting the DVD and she said she would wants to watch it.  Maybe we can finally talk about it as it is driving a big wedge between it.

Fair play Spen.  I'm delighted to hear that your family is so supportive of you.  You have gold there.

Please, if you can, please do try and talk about it.  If not immediately after (depending upon how everyone reacts), then as soon as possible.  If you can say to your family "This is what I see when I get flashbacks.  This is what I try to blank out when I drink to excess.  This is what I can't talk about when you wonder why I'm silent and draw into myself", then you will have come a long, long way on the road back.  And when you walk the rest of it you will have your family with you. 

It is strange to say this but as much as the Arsenal game brought up awareness about the campaign but I wish I had never watched.  That is not a slur on anybody of the 96 and all the surviours but it is has dredged to many memories up.

No.  It is not strange at all.  Guilt (although in your case quite wrongly placed), has been so much a part of your life for so long that, destructive as it is and you know it harms you, you find it difficult to part with it.  On a very trivial level, its like giving up smoking.

I'll pause there for a moment.
Rather a day as a lion than a lifetime as a sheep.

I can only be nice to one person a day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look too good either.
I tried being reasonable.  I didn't like it.  Old enough to know better.  Young enough not to give a fuck.

Offline Glorious Future

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #84 on: January 29, 2007, 12:41:38 pm »
Following this too spen. Ill leave it to Mags to make the constructive contributions here mate. Strange times these for you, stick at it, its a long road, but well worth taking.

Be as patient as you can possibly be through this, with yourself and with your family.


Faith is a passionate intuition.

http://www.contrast.org/hillsborough/

Offline RedMike-86-

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #85 on: January 29, 2007, 12:54:05 pm »
Spen, I am no expert on this subject but members of my family have bottled up grief before, with unpleasant side effects. I think tears would help you mate; tears and talking for as long as it takes for the tears to subside. Bottling stuff up rarely works in the long term. However, as I said I am no expert so take my advise with a pinch of salt and always read the label fella!  :wave

If I can be of any assistance whatsoever, it'd be an honour to help mate.

YNWA.

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Offline RedMike-86-

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #86 on: January 29, 2007, 12:58:28 pm »
Also, I am in the process of writing an educational piece on Hillsborough from the fans point of view.

I want to talk to as many survivors as feel comfortable doing so about the events of April 15th, 1989. I have written a factual piece based on my understanding and research, but this will be largely be quotations from people there on that day. The story told through the eyes of the people that lived it if you will.

If anybody feels able to help me with this project, then please PM me.

YNWA.

Mike
In the land of the witless, the half-wit is king.

Offline Maggie May

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #87 on: January 29, 2007, 01:16:30 pm »
Also, I am in the process of writing an educational piece on Hillsborough from the fans point of view.

I want to talk to as many survivors as feel comfortable doing so about the events of April 15th, 1989. I have written a factual piece based on my understanding and research, but this will be largely be quotations from people there on that day. The story told through the eyes of the people that lived it if you will.

If anybody feels able to help me with this project, then please PM me.

YNWA.

Mike

Most excellent Mike.    All power to you.   
Rather a day as a lion than a lifetime as a sheep.

I can only be nice to one person a day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look too good either.
I tried being reasonable.  I didn't like it.  Old enough to know better.  Young enough not to give a fuck.

Offline Kav

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #88 on: January 29, 2007, 03:14:19 pm »
Mike, if I can be of any help then just let me know mate.
Walk on...

Offline cowlos

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #89 on: January 29, 2007, 03:19:27 pm »
Count me in. Whatever helps :wave

Offline Swoop

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #90 on: January 29, 2007, 03:24:42 pm »
Whatever you need mate.
Its a dogs life for me

Offline RedMike-86-

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #91 on: January 29, 2007, 03:24:52 pm »
Thanks Maggie. :)

Cowlos & Kav - check your PM's fellas. Thanks very much for your help.

YNWA,

Mike
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Offline cowlos

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #92 on: January 29, 2007, 03:30:20 pm »
PM sent mate. I'll get on to it as soon as I can

Offline Kav

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #93 on: January 30, 2007, 10:12:55 am »
PM sent but I dunno if I sent it properly (let me know if you got it Mike).

Will reply tomorrow at latest.
Walk on...

Offline RedMike-86-

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #94 on: January 30, 2007, 01:21:53 pm »
No PM received Kav; but i'll PM you what I need if that's OK?

Mike
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Offline Kav

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #95 on: February 1, 2007, 10:24:10 am »
Dunno what I'm doing wrong on my PM's mate. I can receive them but but cannot seem to send them!

Here's extracts from my article under the headings you gave (I'll add more comments for you tomorrow. I'll have a good think through this for you tonight):

GENERAL

Iíd been up to the league match against Sheffield Wednesday earlier that season but this was a world away from that previous winterís cold draw. Today we had beautiful sunshine.

For the previous seasonís Semi-Final Iíd gone with my mates to Hillsborough for the first time. We popped into the first ale house we came across but it was at the Forest end of things. We had a bevvy there, kept a low profile and there were no problems but you canít beat being with your own Ė especially our own - so we got off and found this Horse & Jockey which was sound.

There had been no noticeable police presence in the Forest pub in 1988 so it had stuck out to me big time when they were showing up and were almost antagonistic when talking to the Redsí fans. They were bit like them night-club bully type bouncers in the days before the registration cards; you know, ďWeíre big and weíve got this uniform so weíll look at you and talk to you like youíre something we shouldnít have trodden in and if you look the wrong way weíll stop you enjoying your day sunshine.Ē

Iíd told my mum and dad in 1988 about the difference in police attitude between us and Forest not knowing that this same blinkered behaviour would contribute to horrific suffering and loss of life just a year later.

THE JOURNEY TO SHEFFIELD

I got up smart and went with Bailey who had been my bezzie since school to meet two more of my mates, Jamie, who I knew from work, and his bezzie, Scott. Jamie was happy driving so no need for Barnesí or Happy Alís coaches with all their restrictions of pickup points and times etc. We could go at our leisure, stop off when we liked, go for a bevvy and get dropped off at the door back home.

The delay in traffic seemed like no big deal. Thousands on the way to the match was gonna slow things up a bit but weíd left in plenty of time.

THE TURNSTILES

Öso we strolled up and without queuing for long went in through Gate C.

I did notice that unlike the previous season there were no police stops on the way to the ground with a check for tickets etc but thought nothing of it.

I got searched as you usually were on the way in. Me and Bailey went straight ahead and through the tunnel directly behind the goal after buying a program. It was the obvious route to take; the clearly marked entrance that greeted you as you entered the stadium through the turnstiles - there were no conspicuous signs directing you to go through anywhere else. Jamie and Scott didnít follow us though. They didnít usually go right in the middle of the Kop and decided to go out of their way and walk around to the side - Iím glad they did; it was chocker in there last time they said.

INSIDE THE GROUND

I noticed from the clock on the Stand to my right that it was 2:15pm. Like I said this was a little early for me. I always tended to go in the Kop at about 2:30pm coz any later and by then the crowd congestion would make it almost impossible to get into my spec in the middle. The crowd built up steadily like any other match. The singing was building up. Everything seemed fine.

A big open terrace like the Kop allowed you to roam wherever you liked once youíd entered it. This Leppings Lane end was a smaller terrace, split into pens with fences that were specifically designed to keep supporters in a particular area. Many or most fans wouldnít have realised that the area directly behind the goal here was split down the middle into two Pens and with radial fences also preventing access to the sides of the terrace, either side of the these two central pens. Bailey didnít know this until seeing the media coverage after the disaster and it was only later that I learnt that the area that weíd been in was called Pen 4. The perimeter fence down the front was to keep fans off the pitch. Being a young lad and with grounds having looked like this since well before I was going, the wariness Iíd obviously have about this set up today wasnít there. In fairness a paying customer at any entertainment event should be able to take their safety for granted.

We were leaning backwards onto a crush barrier, like we would in the Kop. We were well used to riding the waves of the crowd surges. Itís the reverse of what happens at grounds now. These days when somebody gets excited and stands up it forces everybody behind to do the same in ripple effect if they wanna see the action. Back in those days somebody would strain forward to see the action causing a domino effect that would stop at the crush barriers. It could hurt going up against these barriers with the force of the crowd behind so I always got my back to the barriers and with plenty of people in front of me whenever I could. Being young, fit and only a little fella I could wriggle my way around the terraces.
Walk on...

Offline NickoH

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #96 on: February 3, 2007, 09:52:47 pm »
Here goes.........

This is the first time ever (to friend or foe that I have 'talked' about this)........

Rewind to 1989..........I was 3 months from marrying my childhood sweetheart and I had been off work all week with a stomach upset (bad shits in lay terms).

Saturday morning (April 15th 1989) my best mate rang me asking was I going to Hillsborough........fuck it, yeah I'll come even though I had no ticket (due to sickness).......might get one there......mate books extra place on the coach.

Against advice from Mum (everyone listen - Mum always knows best - this is really true) I board the coach.

Half way to Sheffield a chap on the coach has a spare for the Leppings Lane terrace (standing) - my mate offers to swap due to me being weak as fuck due to losing a stone in a week - I gladly take his offer up.

We hit much traffic probs on the way and we are clock watching worrying about if we will get there for the kick off time or not.

Get off the coach up the hill (no time for a bevy) and we hit the congestion outside.....we get through at about 2.40/2.45 and we are split because is standing and I am in the seats above the Leppings Lane terracing.

Get to my seat and see obviously that the outer pens are less packed.

Players come out and don't notice much about the problems below except it looks a bit 'busy' n the centre pens behind the goal.

Beardsley hits the bar and below us it seems that there are more serious problems - people getting lifted up, others arms aloft going nowhere, others trying to climb over the fences......it all unfurls in front off my eyes - fuck all I could do..........

Sit watching for a while and at that stage honestly didn't realise what had gone on.........word filters through (this is before mobiles and text messages) that some are injured and not to be believed some have died (fucking no chance I thought to myself - this is a football game)........the word spread round and I realised it was indeed serious - what about my friends ?

Walked back out the stand and saw a chap sat down, back to the post, crying away - fuck, what has happened ? Men don't cry at football matches  :'(

This was serious........

Left the area where earlier I had gained entry to Hillsborough (where the police had opened the gates) and not far outside was a public phone, outside which I queued up to use and ring home to say I was safe (my girlfriend then rang my Ma who doubted I was safe).

Walk back up the hill to my coach - the coach was absolute quiet.........radio five live on (sure it wasn't call that then) with updates.

It was what seemed like an eternity when my best friend arrived back to the coach........fuck me what a relief (what selfish thoughts).

Coach home totally silent and no empty seats..........BBC radio - 15 dead, 30 dead, 65 dead - fuck off I thought, this is a football match not a war zone.

Got home - best mate and I said our goodbyes and walked into church (then girlfriend was there with our daughter) and threw my arms around her.

Back to her place and we watched the TV until late.

Following week made the pilgrimage to Anfield and witnessed the most glorious site of flags, scarves, etc..... filling almost half of the pitch and all of the Kop......sad but uplifting.

Anyway - fast forward a while........best mate and I sat in Anfield and saw use lose the league to Arsenal and went to Wembley to see us beat the blue shite.

After that I got married in July with my mate being best man.

From that date we drifted apart - we never spoke about Hllsborough........I never lost anyone at Hillsborough and wasn't injured myself, but I lost my best mate that day (maybe a small price to pay).

I have never spoke about Hillsborough to my Mum and Dad, or my wife (best mate in the world) or my kids or even my other best mate Beni (bruv).............

People say - speak to someone about it, it will help but I don't (even now) want to - not sure why but I don't want to......one day, and I think the day is coming closer, I will spit it all out but at the moment it is still a sore subject - I was one of the lucky ones but feel like a part of me died that day (if you know what I mean).

I hope that my words will help someone, even if it is one person, cope with the guilt (yeah, I felt guilty to survive and felt guilty I couldn't help anyone) and bad memories.

You'll never walk alone is our anthem and I really feel that is the case - YNWA my friends..............

I clutch the wire fence until my fingers bleed,
A wound that will not heal, a heart that cannot feel.
Hoping that the horror will recede,
Hoping that tomorrow we'll all be freed.........JUSTICE.

Offline Jo S

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #97 on: February 5, 2007, 05:00:38 pm »
Well in Nick, saw you post on Peter's site.

I think the Arsenal game has dredged up so many memories but also helped people to write about their feelings. Maybe we still can't talk about them but writing about them is theraputic and certainly helped me.

For anyone who hasn't read it there is a really moving post on OTK by jdirkze, I'll leave Jeremy to decide if he wants to post it on here.

I posted my story after the Arsenal game.

The effects of Mackenzieís liesÖ

Been thinking for a while whether I could ever begin to write how the lies printed by Mackenzie affected me. There has been some amazing and brave stories written recently & standing on the Kop singing Justice for the 96 against Arsenal was one of if not the proudest moments of my life, I never thought that I could feel so proud and so sad at the same time.
My story is probably not that different to anyone else who was at Hillsborough but as part of the OTK family I just felt I wanted to talk about it.

Why now?
Dunno, suppose itís the memories stirred up by Mackenzie.

My Story

I was always mad on Liverpool, strangely enough me Dad wasnít into footie and my younger brother was too young. Didnít stop me harassing me mum & dad for a season ticket for me fourteenth birthday though. They knew I was a tomboy but I reckon they thought I would grow out of it. Amusingly enough no-one seemed to really bat an eyelid when I started to go the match on me own. I didnít care that I had no-one to go with, off I trotted with me Season ticket (princely sum of £55)!
I didnít grow out of it, I just loved it even more. Slowly they got used to it but as I was only fourteen they wouldnít let me go to any Away games, fair doís I suppose especially as I was a girl!

The first away game I ever went to was Hillsborough in í88 I was 15, the ticket as I recall was £6 and £7 for the train. Me mum got me up at the crack of dawn and made me a packed lunch. Thought I was the bees knees, going all the way to Sheffield on me own. Can still remember the walk down Leppings Lane, seemed miles from the train station! That was the year I went to my first Wembley and shed me first tears as we lost to Wimbledon. I was in one of the side pens at Hillsborough in í88, I remember looking across at the two pens behind the goal & thinking how chocca they were. Madness I thought as I was standing in acres of space, looking back now the exact same thing happened in í89, why didnít they see it coming?

When it came to í89 I was beside myself with excitement, I was really friendly with one of the teachers in school, we used to have loads of banter about the footie. He was a bluenose and I remember us both leaving school on the Friday afternoon. I wanted them to win for a change. I was too young to go to the final in í86 but this was my chance to go to Wembley and see an all Merseyside Cup Final. I didnít go on the train that year, went on the coach from Picton Clock, Home James I think the firm was called. Me mum took me to the coach (even though I was 16 now)! I donít remember too much about the journey except for two things that stand out, the first one that our coach for some reason went though Manchester and everyone started singing the Munich song. I joined in blindly not really appreciating that I was singing about a tragedy. The second thing was the coach got stopped and searched for alcohol on route. That seemed to hold us up quite a bit as I remember panicking about missing kick off.

Then began the start of a long nightmare, I remember vividly seeing so many people queuing up outside just a mass of fans not even really in a queue. I was really worried about missing kick off by now but that was the least of my worries. I just remember next that someone decided to shut these two outer gates, but they never just shut them they kind of pushed them shut and caused us to be crushed in between the turnstiles and the perimeter gates. I remember thinking I was in big trouble then I was really squashed, on my own, smaller than everyone else. I thought no-one could see me. I really thought I was gonna die OUTSIDE the ground. I suppose because people donít talk about Hillsborough, myself included I never really knew if anyone else felt so crushed outside.

When they opened the gates the first time I remember thinking thank god. They only let a few through at first to relieve some of the outside pressure. I donít blame the police for that not the lads on the ground anyway. Some of them were getting just as crushed as us, I remember them looking frightened and one of them saw me and put his arm round me. He asked me who I was with and when I said on my own he tried to keep hold of me and stop me getting crushed. He was young and frightened and yes he was a policeman but it was the men at the top who were to blame not him. I heard him on his radio pleading for some guidance from a senior officer; he didnít know what to do. Then they opened the gates again, this time for longer and relieved we all piled straight down the tunnel.

The rest as we all know is history and I donít want to talk about the horrors that I saw after that.

The reason for this post is to talk about the relief I felt when someone opened those gates, I felt relief while m fellow fans at the front were crushed to death. When Kelvin Mackenzie published his lies I believed some of them and I was there.

For years I thought it my fault. I really thought that I personally helped to kill the people at the front of those pens. I went back to school on the Monday and got special treatment from the teachers, but I felt a fraud. Here people were being nice to me and wondering if I was okay but they didnít realise that I wanted to them to open those gates that I was alive and the people at the front were dead. I saw those pictures, the crushed faces against fences and I wept. I helped to crush those people.

That is what the lies and the cover up done to people like me, they made me believe that I was responsible. Nearly two years of counselling before I started to believe it wasnít my fault.

People like Kelvin Mackenzie made me think I was a murderer, and if you are reading this you might think well you were there you knew the truth but I was sixteen, an innocent kid going to a footie match. I thought the papers wrote the truth, yeah I knew that some of it was wrong. But I didnít know what to believe. Whose fault was it?
A young policeman helped me, so was it the fault of the police, so many questions.

It took me years to find and accept the answers, so to all the liars on that day especially Mackenzie I hope you are proud of yourselves because you made one tragedy into two. You made me believe I was responsible for those deaths when I wasnít. You ruined my teenage years (although at least I was alive) but most of all you still after all these years cause me pain.

The difference?

Iím older, wiser and I know THE TRUTH.

JUSTICE FOR THE 96

YNWA

Jo
If I could save time in a bottle
The first thing that I'd like to do
Is to save every day
'Til eternity passes away
Just to spend them with you

If I could make days last forever
If words could make wishes come true
I'd save every day
Like a treasure and then,
Again, I would spend them with you

Offline Maggie May

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #98 on: February 6, 2007, 10:19:41 am »
Jo.  You are a very brave lady. 

As I've said before, it is the survival instinct inherent in all of us that impels us to fight for life.  It was perfectly natural of you to think "Thank God" when the pressure came off you.  It was scandalous to make you believe you were a killer of your own kind, and to scar your youth.

Nearly 18 years ago, the world was a lot more innocent than it is now.  We were taught to believe that people in "authority" were decent and honest and right - and that included the media.  As in "its in the paper so it must be right".  The spin put on Hillsborough then wouldn't last five minutes today (God forbid such a thing happened).

I believe you when you say it scarred your youth.  I heard the same from Joey Glover who, when he read those foul lies, believed he had, in effect killed his own brother.  That thought blighted his life for years.

For you, for Joey, for Glofut and Cowlos, and for Nicko and Spen and for all of you.  We will never stop until we have punished the vermin very, very, badly for hurting you all so much.   

Rather a day as a lion than a lifetime as a sheep.

I can only be nice to one person a day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look too good either.
I tried being reasonable.  I didn't like it.  Old enough to know better.  Young enough not to give a fuck.

Offline Jo S

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #99 on: February 6, 2007, 12:17:54 pm »
Thank you Maggie, that means so much.

You are so understanding of the situation and the effects, you support really does make a difference.

Jo
If I could save time in a bottle
The first thing that I'd like to do
Is to save every day
'Til eternity passes away
Just to spend them with you

If I could make days last forever
If words could make wishes come true
I'd save every day
Like a treasure and then,
Again, I would spend them with you

Offline Maggie May

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #100 on: February 6, 2007, 12:39:49 pm »
Dearest girl.  You honour me.  There are many stories to be told of the impact sensationalist journalism has upon people's lives.   I'll put that to the programme makers on ITV and BBC in place of their hiring the vermin for frivolous shite. 
Rather a day as a lion than a lifetime as a sheep.

I can only be nice to one person a day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look too good either.
I tried being reasonable.  I didn't like it.  Old enough to know better.  Young enough not to give a fuck.

Offline Glorious Future

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #101 on: February 6, 2007, 06:15:38 pm »
Well done Jo. Well said. I hope you're working at ending the pain some of the words and deeds gave us.

Thanks again Maggie for words to people. You're a real comfort to people. God bless you.
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Offline the invisible man

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #102 on: February 13, 2007, 09:31:18 am »
Jo, Maggie, Glorious...

as we approach the 18th anniversary of that sad day, I think that more and more people are finaly coming to terms with their own feelings whether of guilt, sadness, frustration, anger, all thoise sorts of confused signals that have probably been bottled  up for many years...

I know one brave chap who has confronted his demons recently and attended his first match since Hillsborough and i am waiting to hear how he went, feelings wise...

You are all incredibly brave and I respect you all for saying how you feel, even if it is frightening or uncomfortable.. let it out, you all have nothing to be guilty or ashamed of, there are others who share that mantle, and they know who they are...

gutterpress & liars, and incompetent coppers...

Keep the faith all, keep on telling it how it was for the future generations to try and understand...

Lemmo..
t.i.m...

Offline Sir Harvest Fields

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #103 on: February 18, 2007, 09:27:05 pm »
Back to the coach and we gratefully caught up with lads! Hugs where exchanged and we boarded. Then came the next bit of reality, we waited and waited on the coach. Finally some 2 hours later the coach driver reluctantly headed back for St Helens……minus 8 passengers ! Halfway back Nick tapped me on the shoulder “Do you still want this” he asked. Stuffed inside jacket was the flag I had made. “Nothing can wrong” are the words that I remembered !



 no offence ladies and gents but for some reason i have avoided this forum. i remember watching it unfold on tv. I lived in East Anglia. it was surreal. i thought maybe it was a drama prog. i was only young. reading that above, and the rest on here really makes you realise how lucky you ( meaning me i suppose ) are. i cant bear to think what i would have done if i was in you guys positions. you all got more inside than i could ever hope for. ill keep reading this forum now. its helped me understand that day more. and dont let the bastards grind you down.


Carl
"Woe to you, Oh Earth and Sea, for the Devil sends the beast with wrath, because he knows the time is short...Let him who hath understanding reckon the number of the beast for it is a human number, its number is Six hundred and sixty six."

Offline jdirckze

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #104 on: March 30, 2007, 07:24:49 pm »
For anyone who hasn't read it there is a really moving post on OTK by jdirkze, I'll leave Jeremy to decide if he wants to post it on here.



Like many in this thread I found writing my thoughts down and sharing them with other people has helped to come to terms a little with some of the feelings that have been going around my head for the past 18yrs - Here is my story off OTK that Jo was referring to - 

I'm relatively new to the various fan websites but have found loads of great friends through the oppotunities they have opened up for me - pity they weren't around 18 yrs ago.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Having  read Joís Hillsborough story and been moved almost to tears I felt maybe I should tell my own  . I realise thousands of people have been deeply affected by the events of that day and many peoples lives were changed forever .  The effect it had on me canít even begin to compare with those who lost their loved ones but even today it is something that continues to haunt me albeit perhaps irrationally.

I am not a Scouser , I have never lived in Liverpool , to look at me many people would probably class me as an OOTER who probably only started supporting Liverpool in the Glory years and only knew about Hillsborough from the news and didnít really understand what impact it has had on so many lives.
To some degree that is true as I didnít  personally know anyone who died that day but in my own way I also felt as if Iíd lost members of my own family , such was and still is the sense of unity and belonging among Liverpool fans .

So why am I a Liverpool fan? Ė no Scouse birthright , I was actually born in London , the son of Sri Lankan immigrants who arrived in England penniless in 1958. I was born shortly after in 59 . Thankfully we moved north when I was only 2 and ended up living in Frodsham where I spent most of my childhood . I didnít really know much about football until the World Cup in 66 which I can still remember but my allegiance to Liverpool came a bit later . Most of my friends in Frodsham were Liverpool fans so it was only a matter of time before I started supporting them . So , no long family tradition of being a RED but once bitten itís been a love affair and a way of life which has been with me all my life and will stay with me till I die.

I remember being devastated after we lost to Arsenal in the 71 Cup Final but my love for the club really blossomed when my Dad finally agreed to take me the 20 miles to my first match at Anfield the year after . I still remember it now , we beat Ipswich 2-0 (2 goals from Toshack) and the sense of joy and wonder at actually being in Anfield was completely overwhelming.  Every other week I used to pluck up the courage to ask Dad to take me to the match Ė usually he had Ďmore importantí things to do like bleed the brakes on the bloody car! but I did manage to get to half a dozen or so games a season . Each time I entered Anfield it was like being amongst family even though I could usually see f**k all from the Paddock where we used to go. Eventually myself and a few of my mates some of  whom were Scousers but lived in Runcorn having been shipped out to the ĎNew Towní started going by ourselves and by the mid 70ís we were regulars on the KOP and even managed a few away games.

 Iíll never forget the 76/77 season  - we got to almost every home game and quite a few aways .Great memories -  The fantastic night against St.Etienne , my first trip to Wembley for the Cup Final ( despite the result) and the glorious win in Rome which to this day is the one thing ( just like Evo) I still regret not going to . It was bang in the middle of my A levels and while I could afford the 60 quid train fare , 3 days there and 3 days back would have meant failing them all ! Thankfully I managed to pass them and got into Medical School at Leeds which was ironic seeing as I hated Leeds United more than any other team at the time.

My student rail card meant I could still get over to Anfield regularly - £1.88 day return  from Leeds to Liverpool Ė cheaper than the £2 it cost to get to Elland Rd on the bus from where we lived!

There werenít many Asian or black fans on the terraces in those days and of course racism was much more upfront then than it is now . There were monkey noises and throwing of bananas as well as the chorus from the KOP of ďhello der maníí at every black player who played at Anfield. I remember being stood on the Clock end at Highbury when half the REDS around me were singing ď we all agree Phil Neal is better than niggersíí referring to the fact that Viv Anderson the first black player to play for England had replaced Phil Neal in the England team a few days before. I happen to agree that Phil Neal was better than Anderson but would perhaps have expressed it slightly differently 

I didnít get involved in too much of the violence prevalent at the time , just the odd skirmish in the rabbit warrens around Maine Road and a bit of a hairy time at the European Cup game at Forest but I was often the butt of racist abuse , sometimes even from our own fans . This didnít deter me though as my growing affinity to Liverpool both the football club and the people gave my an increasing sense of identity and belonging and in my own mind I almost felt like a real Scouser . Ė I know many true Scousers may take exception to me saying that and I can understand why but I can only express how I felt and in fact still feel.

I know I have waffled on about my own past but I really just wanted to give a bit of background as to why the events at Hillsborough also meant so much to me even though Iím not a Scouser and didnít suffer any personal loss.

Many of us not directly connected with those who died have their own individual  feelings over what went on there. Joís feelings of guilt caused by the lies of Mackenzie are a case in point . I also had feelings of guilt for many years about what I experienced that day but for different reasons .

By 1989 I was working as a doctor mainly doing GP locums around the North West . I was able to afford a season ticket and so got to most Liverpool games home and away . I went to Hillsborough on my own , I canít remember why the lads I usually went with didnít go but the fact that they didnít may have saved my life.

I arrived there fairly early , before 2 oíclock and although there were a lot of people outside the Leppings Lane end the crush wasnít too bad and I got in fairly easily thinking Iíd try to get a decent spec. I went straight down the tunnel into the middle pen but already it was pretty packed . If my usual mates had been there we would have stayed there as they liked to stand right behind the goal Ė me being a relative Ďshortarseí would usually make my way down to the front so I could see a bit better although the view was always crap through the railings . This time though as I was alone I looked around for somewhere better so I could see. The pen to the left was half empty and I moved into there first . After a while I saw the middle pen getting chokka and remembered the year before when they blocked off the tunnel and diverted everyone into the side pens. Thinking that my pen would get full I decided to move to the upper pen in the corner which still looked like it had plenty of space. From there I had a great view of the pitch .

I could see how full it was down below but once the match kicked off didnít think anything of it , Iíd been in the Kop plenty of times when it was packed like sardines.

 I had no inkling as to what was happening in there , I saw people spilling onto the pitch , the game was stopped and the  players went off , there were tannoy announcements telling the fans to get off the pitch . Myself and those around me had no idea of the carnage going on just yards away from us . At first it looked like a pitch invasion and I was thinking I wish everyone would just get off the pitch and let the game get started again Ė I still feel so ashamed of  having those thoughts even now .

Time went on and more and more people were spilling onto the pitch , it was obvious this wasnít a pitch invasion and I began to see that some people were hurt but I still had no idea of the seriousness and magnitude of what was unfolding before my eyes. I assumed that there were enough first aiders and St.Johns Ambulance  people around to deal with the situation. Then the realisation of what was happening began to sink in   - I saw lads carrying injured on advertising hoardings , an ambulance came onto the pitch , people were obviously badly hurt . It was only when some of the crowd cleared and I saw a man lying on the ground with his jumper pulled over his head that it fully hit me Ė he was dead .  By this time it must have been about 3.15 - I ran to a steward and told him I was a doctor and needed to get down to the pitch to help Ė he sent me to a policeman who got on his radio and then took me up to the other end of the ground where they were taking the casualties . On the way he said there were about 20 dead .

This news almost floored me Ė there I was standing not 25yards away form where people were dying and not been able to see what was happening Ė how could I have not realised? 

When I got to where the casualties were I couldnít believe what was in front of me . Thereís no point going into details but suffice to say Iíve never felt so helpless in my life .No equipment available and very little organisation for what was a major disaster.  For most of those there it was too late and it was basically a question of doing the best for those who could be saved Ė deciding who went off in an ambulance and who didnít . We did our best but by that time it was too late to make much of a difference .
.
The official time of death of everyone was later deemed to be 3.15 . I know that canít be true as there were people who I and others tried to resuscitate who must have died later than that .  I later wrote to the inquiry saying this but nothing further came of it in the whitewash/cover up that followed.

When all the injured had been taken away to hospital I walked back down the side of the pitch towards the Leppings Lane end . There was an eerie quiet and it was almost empty apart from a few isolated people in obvious shock and grief . I looked again at where I had been standing and saw how close I had been to where all those people had died. 

I had an overwhelming feeling of guilt Ė why hadnít I got down to the pitch at the start?  how could I have not realised what was happening so close to where I was standing? . I had worked in casualty and had some experience of dealing with trauma injuries .  Maybe if I had acted quicker some people may have been saved -  I donít know if I would have made any difference at all but at least I could have tried and maybe helped those who had no medical experience to do the best for the injured.
In my working life I feel I can honestly say Iíve always done my best for my patients but to this day I still  feel that I failed my fellow Reds , my Ďfamilyí on that day and that sense of guilt will probably stay with me forever .

Over the following days as the details of the gross mismanagement of the situation by those in charge came to light, a rising feeling of anger built up in me .  A friend of mine , also a doctor had been sitting in the stand with his dad . When it became clear the match was abandoned they left the ground and were driving away when they heard an appeal on the radio for any medical people to  go to the ground . They tried to turn round but couldnít go anywhere because of the traffic . He got out and headed back on foot but again was much too late to do anything. He like me described a similar feeling of guilt at not realising what was going on when he was in the ground.

All it would have taken was an appeal over the tannoy for medical help , instead they were too busy telling fans to get off the pitch and putting out appeals over the local radio! . In an average population of 45,000 there would have been about 20 or so doctors , 200 nurses and dozens of trained first aiders  , but of course we were all worthless football fans , scum of the earth , drunken yobs who pissed on an robbed the dead , not decent normal people like everyone else who just might have been able to make a difference had it even occurred to them to ask.

This attitude towards football fans and particularly people from Liverpool was reinforced by the subsequent stories (lies) in the scum newspapers over the next few days . I couldnít believe the  absolute contempt they showed for the feelings of the bereaved and those involved on that day Ė they treated fellow human beings in their most desperate hours like total shite Ė thatís a crime a thousand times worse than what they were accusing us of .

The influence of that early inaccurate and malicious reporting despite the subsequent apologies moulded and fixed many peopleís view of what happened that day and even now when I mention Hillsborough to those who have no connection with football they perceive it as a football Ďhooliganí incident rather than the tragedy it was caused by the very people who were supposed to be protecting us .  That is why I , like everyone else must continue to support the Justice campaign so that the real ĎTRUTHí is once and for all made known and put on record .  Itís not about revenge or seeking blood ,  itís about acknowledgement of responsibility and accountability . Itís about treating those so deeply affected with the dignity and respect they were so cruelly denied at the time .

Yes it was a long time ago and there are many  who say let sleeping dogs lie but to those affected the wounds can never heal -  itís never too late though for those responsible to admit their mistakes and say sorry and to those involved that at least would be of some help in the years ahead.

For me I will always feel a sense of guilt , something common to many who survived that day however irrational that may be in reality . Iíve never really talked much about these feelings and maybe sharing my story with fellow Reds on this site will be of some personal benefit to me . Thanks to those of you who have taken the time to read this , I apologise if itís a bit self indulgent ,

JFT96

 

Offline the invisible man

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #105 on: March 31, 2007, 12:52:57 am »
jdirckze,

a very moving account and one of the "Real Truth's"....

only those who were there know what really happened and there has been much said about guilt and many hundreds of fans who were (and still are) traumatised, but, because of our nature, we feel the gulit because we could not do more...

but believe me, without the magnificent actions of many, many Liverpool fans that day the list would have been much higher, and there was nothing any one could do that wasn't already done...

the survivors are a magnificent bunch of people, men & women, boys & girlds who did alll they could on a tragic day when incompetence and bad management ruled..

It was an accident which could have been prevented and those who were there are the invisible heroes...

be proud of who you are, certainly educate the youth, our children deserve to know the real truth, not the shite that comes out every day in the tit-filled rags...

well done to you all, we are a proud city & club, and we are proud of you all

Lemmo...
t.i.m...

Offline the invisible man

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #106 on: March 31, 2007, 02:08:25 pm »
we shall not

we shall not be moved...

just like a team that's gonna win the European Cup...(again...)

we shall not be moved...

all together now!!!

Lemmo... :o ;D 8)
t.i.m...

Offline grego

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #107 on: March 31, 2007, 08:55:04 pm »
jdirckze,

like lemmo says, nearly everyone has the what if/ifonly type emotions about the tragedy........

as he says, the guilt you feel is testament to the person you are and moreover, as soon as you were aware of what was goin on, you then did everything you could.

you are a hero. :)

Offline the invisible man

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #108 on: April 1, 2007, 12:45:04 am »
 :wave

well in grego...

you are all fucking heroes...

not one of the crowd that day had bad thoughts or feelings the way we were portrayed in the fuckwit media...

"oh yeah it must be true , it was only them scousers...!!!"

stupid idiot tit rags, thats all they can do to try to sell their rag...

let's keep the boycott up and make the twats bankrupt

they will stop printing it one day

Lemmo...
t.i.m...

Offline Glorious Future

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #109 on: April 1, 2007, 07:40:31 am »
jdirckze, and others contributing, I have only admiration for you putting down in words such powerful thoughts and experiences that in fact comfort others now. To read of others who felt similarly, who feel it to this day, means a lot to many people, and the feelings of grief, shame and guilt, as painful as they are, can only be put in a correct place by people being open about them.

One day we'll know the right place for them, and we'll treat ourselves with the respect and care others seem to here, but there is a burning need to restore some dignity that they took away from us when we were least able to defend ourselves, with their casual but devastating words, with their terrible disregard for who we were.

We will get there I hope.

Can I just say how lucky I think we are to be surrounded by such amazing people with their amazingly kind words on this forum. Ive been lucky enough to meet some, and as we come around to that time, I want to say to all who contribute, who comment, who give kind words to others on this forum, thank you. You would never believe how much they mean at times.

JFT96
Faith is a passionate intuition.

http://www.contrast.org/hillsborough/

Offline jdirckze

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #110 on: April 1, 2007, 09:56:42 am »
Can I just say how lucky I think we are to be surrounded by such amazing people with their amazingly kind words on this forum. Ive been lucky enough to meet some, and as we come around to that time, I want to say to all who contribute, who comment, who give kind words to others on this forum, thank you. You would never believe how much they mean at times.

JFT96

I'll echo that - as I said before these forums have given a lot of us a chance to express suppressed feelings and the messages of support and friends made has been a great comfort to me and many others. 

Thanks everyone for your kind words

Jeremy

Offline the invisible man

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #111 on: April 9, 2007, 03:06:18 pm »
 :wave

we are all one here at LFC and we share our love and our grief...

keep up the strength all you magnificent redmen & women...

Justice will be found..

JFT96

Lemmo...
t.i.m...

Offline AJ-HOPE FOR HILLSBOROUGH

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #112 on: April 11, 2007, 03:44:20 pm »
I AGREE, IT IS GOOD TO HAVE THESE COMMENTS, IT MAKES EVERYONE AWARE OF THE SITUATION AT PRESENT AND THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS OF OTHERS FOR ALL TO READ. AS WE APPROACH THIS TIME OF YEAR AGAIN, I WANT TO SEND MY LOVING THOUGHTS TO ALL THE BEREAVED FAMILIES AND SURVIVORS, I FOR ONE ASSIST ANNE WILLIAMS IN THE HOPE FOR HILLSBOROUGH GROUP (annewilliams96@btinternet.com , annajameson@tiscali.co.uk) AND UNDERSTAND TOTALLY WHY THERE IS STILL SO MUCH PAIN AND TROUBLE RESOLVING THIS NEARLY 18 YEARS ON. I HAVE WITNESSED FIRST HAND THE FIGHT FOR JUSTICE ANNE IS CONTINUALLY DOING AS HER SON KEVIN PAVES THE WAY FOR JUSTICE FOR THE 96, IF SHE HADNT HAVE FOUND ALL THE PEOPLE WHO HELPED KEVIN OR CARRIED HIM OFF THAT DAY THEN SHE WOULD'NT BE ABLE TO PROVE THE CUT OFF TIME WAS WRONG. LETS HOPE THE EUROPEAN COURTS DEAL WITH ALL THIS EVIDENCE ACCORDINGLY, BELEIVE ME SHE HAS FOUND EVERYTHING! GET JUSTICE FOR HER SON KEVIN AND THE FELLOW 95. YNWA ANNE. HOPE FOR HILLSBOROUGH

Offline Glorious Future

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #113 on: April 12, 2007, 01:07:44 pm »
Thanks Anna, we all hope with all our hearts that Anne finds the justice she has for so long and rightfully been pursuing, and that this may open doors for those who may have doubted that truth would ever be established. Truth, justice and ultimately peace is all so many of us have looked for for so long.

Good luck Anne, and all who pass this way.
Faith is a passionate intuition.

http://www.contrast.org/hillsborough/

Offline the invisible man

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #114 on: April 12, 2007, 03:08:38 pm »
good luck ladies and bump for this...

you have 100% support from all LIverpool fans around the world, we will fight these cowards who will not admit that there is even a possibility that they could make a mistake...

JFT96...

t.i.m...

Offline RedMike-86-

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #115 on: April 12, 2007, 09:25:25 pm »
Can I please just say that I have the utmost love for this club and it's supporters, and if there is any way I can help anyone affected by Hillsborough I would consider it an honour.

May you all Never Walk Alone.

Mike

p.s. Maybe as a dad (soon to be a dad again) I have been slightly over-emotional in this post - but I mean every word. People have sent me PM's after reading my threads on the subject that have reduced me to proud tears ...

YNWA.



In the land of the witless, the half-wit is king.

Offline Glorious Future

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #116 on: April 13, 2007, 10:02:44 am »
Can I please just say that I have the utmost love for this club and it's supporters, and if there is any way I can help anyone affected by Hillsborough I would consider it an honour.

May you all Never Walk Alone.

Mike

p.s. Maybe as a dad (soon to be a dad again) I have been slightly over-emotional in this post - but I mean every word. People have sent me PM's after reading my threads on the subject that have reduced me to proud tears ...

YNWA.





No, it's because of things said like that, that many of us keep our sanity.
Faith is a passionate intuition.

http://www.contrast.org/hillsborough/

Offline Swoop

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #117 on: April 20, 2007, 04:00:50 pm »
To those that sent me text messages, sorry I didnt respond, I tend to cut myself of a little around this time of year so I'll catch up with you later.

I was chuffed with the turnout for the memorial, though sadly I stopped going a few years ago due to the amount of "tourists" that were in attendance and taking pictures of players etc, really wound me up so have stayed away since as I don't want to cause an scene by thumping some idiot.

A word to those of you out there the silent ones, the ones who have yet to deal with their own personal demons.  Donít continue to keep it bottled up, let it go, write something here, talk to somebody, write a letter and put it in a bottle and chuck it in the sea.  Just do something.  Too many still suffer in silence, still donít understand that they too were victims.  Not a nice word I know, one I still too this day do not accept for myself.  I do however know that I was changed that day and it took me nearly 15 years to realise it.  15 years where I didnít live my life to it's fullest because inside I was afraid, never knew what of, never understood it or questioned it, just accepted that it was who I was. 

Then I found this place, the boards here made me question myself and that was the first step to unlocking the door. Believe me it's a relief when you step through it, and break down the walls. I can only explain it this way.
I felt for years that I was drifting through life, not really living it, not allowing myself to feel anything and when I finally worked out what it was that made me that way I could finally chuck out an anchor, stop drifting and start living again. 

Iím not saying lifeís suddenly becomes perfect, but at least you can make a start and make decisions you would never have had the bottle to take before.
Its a dogs life for me

Offline Sir Harvest Fields

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #118 on: April 20, 2007, 08:27:30 pm »
well in swoop. I wasnt there and would never assume i know how you or many others feel. the only thing i can say is i, and all reds will be here if any of you need anything.

I have just watched Mc Governs Hillsborough and im not a man moved to tears easily but that had me. big time.

I kept thinking ' if only ' .

If.


its a big word.

Carl
"Woe to you, Oh Earth and Sea, for the Devil sends the beast with wrath, because he knows the time is short...Let him who hath understanding reckon the number of the beast for it is a human number, its number is Six hundred and sixty six."

Offline the invisible man

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Re: Ok, here goes... Survivors: Here.
« Reply #119 on: April 20, 2007, 09:32:08 pm »
wise words swoop

anyone who has any feelings whatsoever, please don't keep them bottled up, even if you wanna say "piss off Lemmo and let me be" thats fine, just think that we are all still here and we need to educate the young kids who keep saying

"WHATS ALL THIS ABOUT...?" its up to me & you to tell them, so tell your story, it will hurt, get a cuppa and just do it...

the people round here are sound and will know what you are going through..

respect...

Lemmo...
t.i.m...