The father of Ana Clara Benevides Machado, the young Taylor Swift fan who died before the singer’s concert in Brazil on Friday, is searching for answers.
The 23-year-old Swiftie died ahead of the singer’s Eras Tour show at the Estadio Nilton Santos in Rio de Janeiro after complaining of feeling unwell.
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After being attended to by first responders at the venue, she was taken to Salgado Filho Hospital, where she died.
A cause of death has not yet been confirmed but reports have blamed it on the extreme heat, with Rio having reached about 41C on the day of the concert.
Speaking to Brazilian newspaper Folha de S. Paulo, her 53-year-old father, Weiny Machado, said he wanted clarification on whether concertgoers were allowed to have water bottles as they waited in line.
“I want to know if it’s true that they are prohibited from bringing water and neglected to provide assistance,” he said, as reported by People.
“I lost my only daughter, a happy and intelligent girl.
“She was about to graduate in psychology next April.
“I have no words to express my pain.
“She left home to fulfill a dream and came back dead.”
Some fans speaking to the Brazilian news outlet said organisers did not hand out water as fans waited in line to get into the concert venue in 41C weather.
After learning of her fan’s death, Swift took to social media to express her devastation.
“I can’t believe I’m writing these words but it is with a shattered heart that I say we lost a fan earlier tonight before my show,” Swift wrote on Instagram.
“There’s very little information I have other than the fact that she was so incredibly beautiful and far too young.”
The concert organisers, Time4Fun, also released a statement on social media.
“Last night, Ana Clara felt unwell and was promptly attended to by the team of firefighters and paramedics, being taken to the medical centre at the Nilton Santos Stadium for first aid protocol,” the organiser said in a statement posted to Instagram.
“Given the situation, the medical team chose to transfer her to Salgado Filho Hospital, where, after almost an hour of emergency care, she unfortunately died.
“To the family and friends of Ana Clara Benevides Machado, our sincere condolences.”
Videos on social media from the performance that night showed Swift saying people needed water, and at one point she threw a bottle of water to someone in the crowd.
Machado’s death prompted the federal government to order that Time4Fun ensured water access at all of Swift’s concerts in Brazil.
They also issued a directive allowing water bottles to be brought into all concerts from now on.
Swift’s tour of Brazil has been plagued by a number of different problems.
Gabriel Mongenot Santana Milhomem Santos, 25, a fan who had travelled from the country’s centre-west region to see Swift, was stabbed to death on a Copacabana beach early on Monday, Rio’s police said.
Fans also reported fainting from extreme heat, being mugged or getting caught up in a police raid.
One fan said her “dream” of seeing Swift had turned into a “nightmare” after she became stuck with hundreds of other people on one of the ramps to a VIP area on Saturday as security officers blocked the entrance for Swift’s second scheduled Rio show.
Once security let them through, she said, people started running and she fell on a hot metallic floor that burned her leg and back.
Ultimately, that night’s show was postponed after tens of thousands of fans had spent hours lining up in the heat.
Swift announced on Instagram that it was necessary “due to the extreme temperatures in Rio”.
The postponement was followed by chaos outside the stadium.
Under a light rain, a mass of concertgoers left the area, which is close to one of Rio’s working-class neighbourhoods, known as favelas.
Videos shared on social media showed groups of pickpockets robbing fans of their belongings.
Many took refuge inside a Burger King, ducking for cover under tables and behind the counter in the kitchen area.
Heavily armed police raided the fast food restaurant’s basement as loud sirens blared and those stuck outside the restaurant shouted.
Saturday’s show was postponed to Monday night, but many who had travelled from other regions of Brazil and outside the country had already made plans to leave earlier.
“We’re not going to be able to make it,” said Hely Olivares, a 41 year-old Venezuelan who had travelled from Panama.
“A lot of people have wasted their journey.”
– with AAP
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