A Christmas lights display representing the tragic LaMia Flight 2933 crash, which resulted in the death of most members of a Brazilian football team, has ignited public outrage.
The ill-fated flight, carrying the Chapecoense football team, met with disaster near Medellín, Colombia, on 28 November 2016. The team was en route to the 2016 Copa Sudamericana Finals from Bolivia.
Of the 77 individuals on board, the crash claimed the lives of 71, including players and staff. Only six survived: three players, one crew member, and two other passengers.
This controversial Christmas decoration was set up near the crash site in La Unión, Antioquia Department. Organizers claim it’s a dual-purpose installation: a tribute to the victims on the upcoming seventh anniversary of the accident and a festive display.
Many locals, however, view it as a distasteful reminder of the tragedy. Comments from residents range from calling it an “embarrassment” to “perverse and unnecessary.” Some residents, like Sara and Juan, labeled it “terrible” and “tasteless,” while Daniela decried it as “awful” and “shameful.”
Sebastián Gómez, ex-director of the Chapecoense Museum, dedicated to the crash victims, criticized the display, likening it to a “tabloid joke” rather than a respectful homage.
The mayor’s office has not yet issued a response to this mounting criticism. Meanwhile, the controversial lights in La Unión are scheduled to be officially lit in a ceremony on 25 November.
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