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Man who died after fight at Patriots game once saved girl from drowning

Man who died after fight at Patriots game once saved girl from drowning

Dale Mooney has been described as a 'proud father' and a longtime Patriots fan

A dad-of-two who died after a fight broke out at a Patriots-Dolphins game is being remembered as a 'proud father' who once saved a young girl from drowning.

Police have launched an investigation into the events that unfolded when fans gathered to watch the football game at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts on Sunday (17 September).

Witnesses have described a fight breaking out at the game, with one football fan telling NBC Boston a victim got 'punched really hard on the side of the head'.

The fight broke out at Gillette Stadium.
Facebook/Gillette Stadium

"He's a bigger guy but he just crumbled," the witness said.

"First responders got there and they instantly start doing compressions, they had to lay him out in the aisle between the seats. They were doing compressions by my estimation for easily 10 minutes," the witness added.

"It was pretty heartbreaking and the game was still going on so the general public clearly knew what was going on in our section, so the game was going on, people are cheering for the Patriots comeback, and this poor guy has passed away before our eyes. It was pretty brutal to watch."

Massachusetts State police have said Dale Mooney, 53, had an 'apparent medical event' in the 308/309 section of the stadium shortly before 11pm local time.

Mooney, a husband and father, was taken to hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Dale Mooney was a longtime Patriots fan.

In the wake of Mooney's passing, details of a former heroic encounter he had have resurfaced.

In July 2009, Mooney was enjoying the day at Hampton Beach when he spotted a young girl caught between the rocks in high tide while trying to retrieve her boogie board.

The dad spotted the young girl stuck amid the surrounding water, telling Seacoast Online: "The waves were slamming over her and she couldn't even stay on her feet. She kept falling in between the rocks, trying to keep her head above water."

Mooney told the girl to climb onto his shoulders, after which they were both hit by 'two or three rounds' of waves as they tried to get back to the beach.

Mooney helped the girl out of the rough waves.

Thankfully they made it back in one piece, and bystanders were quick to offer their praise to Mooney.

A GoFundMe page has been set up for the father in the wake of his death, describing him as a 'hardworking family man' who died after an 'unexpected incident' at the game.

Officials from the Patriots and Gillette Stadium addressed Mooney's death in a statement this week, saying: “We are heartbroken to learn of the tragic passing of Dale Mooney, a lifelong Patriots fans and 30-year season ticket member, who died while attending last Sunday night’s Patriots game.

"We continue to work with local authorities to assist them with their ongoing investigation. We extend our sincerest sympathies and heartfelt condolences to Dale’s family and to all those who are mourning his loss.”

State police have confirmed they are investigating 'the facts and circumstances of the man's death, including the sequence of events prior to the medical incident'.

Featured Image Credit: GoFundMe/ NBC Boston 10

Topics: Sport, US News, Health, Football