Footballer Jean-Pierre Adams Dies At 73 After 39 Years In A Coma

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Footballer Jean-Pierre Adams Dies At 73 After 39 Years In A Coma

Footballer Jean-Pierre Adams has died at the age of 73, after being in a coma for the past 39 years.

Adams, a former French international defender, passed away earlier today (Monday 6 September) at the Nîmes University Hospital, French media outlet L'Equipe reported.

He had been in a deep coma since 1982, following an anaesthesiology error while he underwent an operation to treat a ligament rupture injury.

Nîmes Olympiques, one of Adams' former clubs, confirmed his passing on social media, saying in a statement: "We learned this morning of the disappearance of Jean-Pierre Adams.


"He had worn the colors of Nîmes Olympique 84 times and formed with Marius Trésor 'the black guard' in the French team.

"The Club offers its most sincere condolences to its loved ones and to its family."

OGC Nice, who Adams also once played for, also said on Twitter: "The #OGCNice learned with heartbreaking the disappearance of Jean-Pierre Adams plunged into a coma since March 17, 1982.

"The former defender wore the Gym colors 145 times from 1973 to 1977. OGCNice is associated with the grief of his relatives who have looked after him for 39 years."

Credit: AFP via Getty Images
Credit: AFP via Getty Images

It added that it would pay tribute to the late footballer before a forthcoming game later this month, saying: "A tribute will be paid to Jean-Pierre Adams before #OGCNASM Sunday, September 19 at the Allianz Riviera."

Paris Saint-Germain, who Adams also played for, also paid tribute: "The @PSG_inside lost, this Monday, September 6, one of his glorious elders. Defender of the Rouge et Bleu and the Equipe de France, Jean-Pierre Adams wore the Parisian colors from 1977 to 1979.

"The Club extends its condolences to his family and loved ones."


Adams was born in Dakar, Senegal, but was later sent to school in France and fostered by a French family who lived near Paris.

He started playing as a striker with Entente BFN in 1967, before signing with Nîmes in 1970, before transferring to Nice in 1973 and Paris Saint-Germain from 1977-1979.

After one year in Division 2 with Mulhouse, Adams retired in 1981 at the age of 33.

The following year, he was admitted to a hospital in Lyon to undergo a routine knee operation.


According to the Guardian, he was given anaesthetic that was supposed to knock him out for just a few hours, but he never woke up.

He was eventually moved him, where wife Bernadette cared for him - reportedly sleeping in the same room as him so that she could get up in the middle of the night to turn him.

Speaking with Midi Libre in 2012, Bernadatte said: "I have the feeling that time stopped on 17 March 1982.

"There are no changes, either good or bad. While he does not need respiratory assistance, he remains in a vegetative state.


"Last year, we met a neurologist specialising in brain injury from Carémeau [the hospital in Nîmes] through an acquaintance. He ran his tests and examinations at the hospital, which confirmed very significant damage.

"There was a lot of damage in the brain. But he does not age, but for a few white hairs."

However, she said euthanasia was 'unthinkable', adding: "He cannot speak. And it's not for me to decide for him."

Featured Image Credit: AFP via Getty Images

Topics: SPORT, News, Football

Jess Hardiman
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