Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha, the son of Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, has vowed to honour his father by continuing his legacy at the King Power Stadium.
Thai billionaire Vichai died on Saturday night along with four other passengers when his helicopter crashed shortly after taking off from the club’s pitch.
Vichai achieved great things after buying Leicester in 2010 — as the Foxes won promotion from the Championship 2014 before becoming the most unlikely Premier League champions ever just two years later.
Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha (right) shared a picture of himself hugging and kissing dad Vichai
Aiyawatt (right) covered his mouth as he viewed tributes to father following his tragic death
Owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, pictured (left) with his son in 2017, died on Saturday night
And Aiyawatt does not want Leicester’s fairytale to end now. In an emotional statement released on Instagram, he paid tribute to his dad and promised to do everything he can ‘to carry on his big vision and dreams’.
The statement, which was accompanied by a touching image of Aiyawatt kissing and hugging his late dad, read: ‘I would like to thank everyone from the bottom of my heart for this overwhelming support. What happened made me realize how important my dad was to many people all over the world and I’m touched by how many people kept him close to their hearts.
‘I’m extremely proud to have such an extraordinary father. From him, I have received a very big mission and legacy to pass on and I intend to do just that.
‘I know that I will receive the support I need to make this happen and I am grateful for all your messages and kind words.
‘For a long time, my father taught me to be strong and to take care of my family. He had a way of teaching me about life and work without making it seem like a lesson. He was my mentor and role model.
‘Today, he has left me with a legacy to continue and I will do everything I can to carry on his big vision and dreams.
‘My family and I would like to thank each and every one of you for your sincere kindness and good intentions during the most difficult time for us.
‘I miss you dad, with all my heart.
‘Top Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha’.
Aiyawatt visited the King Power Stadium on Monday to view flowers and scarves laid by fans
Leicester players and staff observed a minute’s silence as they stood around the centre circle
Leicester postponed Tuesday night’s EFL Cup tie against Southampton following the tragic events of the weekend, but Saturday’s game at Cardiff will go ahead.
Travel plans have changed though, with the club deciding to take a coach rather than flying to Wales.
A collective decision was taken that travelling by plane would be insensitive given the circumstances of the chairman’s recent death.
Senior executives appreciated the delicacy of the situation and made the call, which was supported by manager Claude Puel, his coaching staff and all the players.