For the past couple years, the soccer community had gathered around young Sunderland fan Bradley Lowery, who was suffering from neuroblastoma. Players and teams throughout the Premier League bonded together to support Bradley and give him a great life. Bradley’s parents posted on Facebook that their son died from the fatal illness at the age of six.
My brave boy has went with the angels today 07/07/17 at 13:35, in mammy and daddies arms surrounded by his family. 💔💔💔
He was our little superhero and put the biggest fight up but he was needed else where.
There are no words to describe how heart broken we are.
Thank you everyone for all your support and kind words.
Sleep tight baby boy and fly high with them angels 💙💙💙💙
Bradley’s death has devastated everyone within the soccer community but none probably as much as Jermain Defoe. The former Sunderland captain met Bradley when they were paired up to walk out before a game and had been virtually inseparable after. Defoe treated Bradley as if he was his son and went to visit and be at his bedside whenever he could. The now Bournemouth striker hasn’t posted anything since Bradley’s death but Defoe knew and acknowledged it was a matter of time and broke down in tears when asked about Bradley during a press conference Thursday.
Jermain Defoe talking about little Bradley Lowery, who died today, is very moving. “His love's genuine.” pic.twitter.com/KiVYmd99Sb
— SimonNRicketts (@SimonNRicketts) July 7, 2017
Rivalry and team allegiances were set aside as everyone honored Bradley throughout his fight. Tributes poured in from all over once it was revealed Bradley had passed.
— Sunderland AFC (@SunderlandAFC) July 7, 2017
There's only one Bradley Lowery. pic.twitter.com/dzW6mB9lAN
— England (@England) July 7, 2017
— Premier League (@premierleague) July 7, 2017
Today, the football world lost one of its bravest fans.
Rest in peace, Bradley Lowery. pic.twitter.com/x3dhF7yvaO
— FIFA.com (@FIFAcom) July 7, 2017
You inspired us all with your bravery. Rest in peace, Bradley Lowery. pic.twitter.com/KOkoQlSZd3
— West Ham United (@WestHamUtd) July 7, 2017
All at Chelsea are deeply saddened to learn of Bradley Lowery's passing. He touched all of us with his bravery and winning smile. pic.twitter.com/aZneoHlFBf
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) July 7, 2017
You touched all of our hearts with your remarkable strength and courage. RIP Bradley Lowery.
— Stoke City FC (@stokecity) July 7, 2017
— Everton (@Everton) July 7, 2017
Our deepest condolences go out to the family of Bradley Lowery and all who supported him throughout his brave battle. pic.twitter.com/8Zvt2AxYyx
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) July 7, 2017
Bradley was an inspiration to everyone. Our thoughts are with you all at this sad time. May he rest in peace.
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) July 7, 2017
RIP Bradley. An inspirational boy – we’re all thinking of you here at Manchester United.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 7, 2017
So sorry that little @Bradleysfight has passed away. An inspirational life cut way too short. Thoughts with his amazing family & friends RIP
— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) July 7, 2017
Rest in peace @Bradleysfight
A truly inspirational little boy with spirit and fight beyond his tender years.
Love to his family ❤️
— Stan Collymore (@StanCollymore) July 7, 2017
R.I.P Bradley Lowery you are with the angels now. You are a true inspiration & fighter. Blessing & Love 💔
— daRealAAkinfenwa (@daRealAkinfenwa) July 7, 2017
Terribly sad to hear that little Bradley Lowery has passed away. A warrior and an inspiration to the end. RIP Bradley.
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) July 7, 2017
— Kasper Schmeichel (@kschmeichel1) July 7, 2017
Bradley’s parents had set up a site to donate money for Bradley’s treatment. Now, money is still going to be raised and go toward setting up the Bradley Lowery Foundation, which will help pay for treatment for other kids who have neuroblastoma.
Bradley Lowery’s story touched many and showed that for all the negative things that can take place within sports and specifically in soccer, it can also bring so many people together for someone who still saw the sport they loved at its most innocent. Bradley Lowery was a fan of the sport and the sport was a fan of him and while he lived a rough and unfair life, those around him did the best they could to make sure he made the most of what little time he had.
It’s true what everyone is saying in the soccer world, there’s really only one Bradley Lowery.