From 6 in the morning they began to enter through Balcarce 50 to fire the star. More than a million people are expected.
How many possible ways are there to say thank you? For the fans who waited all night in the Plaza de Mayo to fire their idol, thousands. Diego Armando Maradona, who died at the age of 60 on Wednesday, is veiled at the Casa Rosada from six in the morning so that millions of Argentines can say goodbye to him. The wake with access to the public will last, in principle, until 4:00 p.m.
“Thanks Diego”, “I love you, Diego”, “You are the best thing that happened to us”, “We are not going to forget you, Diego”. The phrases are repeated and the fans pass one after another entering through the main entrance of the Government House, crossing the esplanade and entering. Just a couple of seconds in front of the coffin serve to demonstrate the immense love they feel for Maradona.
After the intimate farewell to his family and a group close to the star, among which were footballers, former players and even the head of Boca’s brave bar, Rafael Di Zeo, those who want to give him began to enter the Government House the last goodbye to Ten.
Immediately after the gates were opened, a small incident occurred with a group of people trying to tear down the containment fences and confronted the Police.
Once the wake was enabled, the live broadcast of the ceremony showed the coffin in which Maradona rests wrapped in an Argentine shirt with the mythical number 10. But Boca shirts and others from the national team were quickly added, which some of the first in passing to fire him they threw.
“Thanks Claudia, strength girls. Claudia, there is no woman like you. I love you Diego”A man wearing the shirt that Maradona wore in his farewell match told Claudia Villafañe, Dalma and Gianinna Maradona with a clenched fist, followed by applause from those who walked behind him.
With shirts from the Argentine National Team, Boca Juniors, River Plate, Racing, Barcelona, Argentinos Juniors and Napoli, among other clubs, the colors seem infinite. A man stops in front of the coffin, looks at the ceiling, throws a white flower in the center of the room and shouts: “Long live the Homeland, long live Diego Armando Maradona”.
At times, the gestures are comparable to those of the celebration of a goal. There are those who cross themselves with the rosary clenched in their hands or put their hands together in prayer, those who throw a kiss to heaven, those who hit their fists hard against their chest, those who praise the crack that made them love football, those who wave their arms in the air and there are those who kiss the shield on their jersey.
The applause is repeated and also the songs that have been echoing in the streets, balconies and Argentine homes since Wednesday are replicated in the Casa Rosada: “Olé, olé, olé, olé, Diego, Diego”.
Before allowing the entrance of the people who made a long vigil of hours in the surroundings of La Rosada, family and friends began to say goodbye to the world champion in Mexico ’86 in an intimate ceremony.
Maradona’s coffin arrived at the Government House after 1 in the morning. Claudia Villafañe and her daughters, Gianinna and Dalma Maradona, had arrived minutes before. Verónica Ojeda, Dieguito Fernando and Jana Maradona are other members of the family circle who are already in the Casa Rosada. Diego Jr. is in Italy, hospitalized for coronavirus.
After agreeing to it in their WhatsApp group, the 1986 Mexican champions paraded together at the entrance to say goodbye to “the captain”, as Oscar Ruggeri defined him on Wednesday at noon, upon learning of the death.
Sergio Batista, Jorge Burruchaga, Ricardo Giusti, Oscar Garré and Carlos “Chino” Tapia were part of that line. There was no lack of Víctor Galíndez, the historical masseur of the National Team. Chiqui Tapia, president of the AFA, and Guillermo Coppola, a former representative of Maradona, are also there.
The entrance of the public is enabled until 16. The entrance to say goodbye to Maradona is by of Balcarce 50; egress through Balcarce 24. Two fences were installed to contain the attendees. There is a single entrance for the public from Avenida de Mayo and 9 de Julio. The use of a mask is required to enter.
For their part, family members and guests enter through the esplanade entrance of Alem and Rivadavia avenues.
The Native Peoples room and the Women’s Room are intended for the exclusive use of family and personal friends. The staff of the headquarters of the Executive will have administrative leave.