The Denver Post - - NATION & WORLD -

rio negro, colombia » Vic­tims of this week’s tragic air crash in the An­des were flown home Fri­day as Bolivia’s pres­i­dent called for “dras­tic mea­sures” against avi­a­tion of­fi­cials who signed off on a flight plan that ex­perts and even one of the char­ter airline’s ex­ec­u­tives said should never have been at­tempted be­cause of a pos­si­ble fuel short­age.

The move by Pres­i­dent Evo Mo­rales came af­ter ev­i­dence emerged that the pilot re­ported the plane was out of fuel min­utes be­fore it slammed into a muddy moun­tain­side, killing all but six of the 77 peo­ple on board. Among the dead were play­ers and coaches from a small-town Brazil­ian soc­cer team that was headed to the fi­nals of one of South Amer­ica’s most pres­ti­gious tour­na­ments af­ter a fairy­tale sea­son that had cap­ti­vated their soc­cer-crazed na­tion.

As an honor guard played taps early Fri­day, mem­bers of Colombia’s mil­i­tary loaded five Bo­li­vian crew mem­bers who died in the crash onto a cargo plane for the trip back home.

Later in the day, cas­kets con­tain­ing the re­mains of 50 Brazil­ian vic­tims, many draped with sheets printed with their team’s green and white logo, be­gan the jour­ney to the Chapecoense club’s home­town in south­ern Brazil.

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