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At least 30 members of Haiti's soccer federation dead
by Paul Kennedy, January 20th, 2010 7AM



Jean Yves Labaze, who coached Haiti to the Under-17 World Cup finals in 2007, was among at least 30 members of Haiti's soccer federation who died in last week's earthquake. Its executive committee was meeting when the quake struck, causing the three-story building in Port-au-Prince that served as the headquarters for the federation to collapse. Its president, Dr. Yves Jean Bart, was the only one who survived.

Caribbean Football Union vice president Captain Horace Burrell visited Haiti, where he was met by Jean Bart, who was injured in the collapse of the federation headquarters.

Burrell filed a report to Concacaf president and FIFA vice president Jack Warner on Tuesday:

"I was met at the airport by an injured President Dr Yves Jean Bart (president of the Haitian Football Federation). His injuries and bandages remain stark reminders of his narrow escape from the crumbling building following the earthquake. President Jean Bart, explained that he and other members of the executive committee were meeting at the time of the quake and he was the only survivor.

"As we travelled down what now remains of the major highway, the buildings that line the roadways are but crumbled shells of their previous incarnations, not even a hint of their previous grandeur can be seen.

"None is a truer reflection of this statement than the federation's headquarters.

"Once a three story magnanimous structure, all that remains is a concrete slab. The stench of death is present everywhere on this island. As we looked at the ruins, I saw three decomposing bodies, visibly mangled in the rubble.

"All that it would take is proper equipment to free the bodies, to allow their families the courtesy of a proper funeral. But many on this island have been robbed of that courtesy."

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