Best Known For
Bobby Charlton is best known for being one of England's most accomplished soccer player of all time.
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Flying back to England after a game in Belgrade during the 1958 European Cup semi-finals, a plane carrying the Manchester United team stopped to refuel in Munich, Germany. The snowy conditions of the day, February 6, led to an accumulation of slush on the runway, which caused trouble and caused the plane to crash into the airport's perimeter fence, slide 200 yards across a frozen field and burst into flames.
Charlton, who was aboard the plane,
was spared severe injuries. While he was able to walk away from the wreckage, 22 people were killed in the crash.
Throughout his career, Charlton obtained 106 international caps, earning him entry into the exclusive circle of players with a Century of Caps. He won everything the game has to offer, according to the International Hall of Fame: International caps and goals, championships and Cup winner's medals.
But it was more than just his tremendous achievements that sparked instant recognition. It was also more than his grace, speed and athleticism. According to the International Hall of Fame website, "Charlton stood for something that the world admired. He was a gentleman, the ultimate in old-fashioned sporting heroes." Charlton didn't get in trouble or argue with referees, and he showed honesty and respect to his opponents.
According to the International Hall of Fame, "Had he not been so modest, there was a time when Bobby Charlton could have claimed, with some justification, that he was the most famous living Englishman."
In 2008, Charlton was honored with the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award. He was also given the freedom of the city of Manchester in 2009, at the age of 71.
Charlton married Norma Ball in 1961. They have two daughters, Suzanne and Andrea.
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