Shane Warne’s pal reveals poignant final photo of cricket star taken in Thai villa before his sudden death
SHANE Warne’s pal has revealed the poignant last photo taken of the cricket star before his sudden death last week.
Tom Hall has paid a heartbreaking tribute today after Shane died at a Thai resort last week.
And he said the ace’s final act was to return to his bedroom to call his children.
Sharing a photo of Shane with a cap on smiling broadly into a camera, the CEO of Sporting News said the friends had gathered to eat a last meal of Vegemite on toast together.
“An Australian through and through – this was to turn out to be his last meal,” he said.
“Ever the caring father, as I was leaving, he headed up to his bedroom to call his kids.”
None of the friends on the trip were aware of Shane visiting a doctor before his death.
However, he’d complained of chest pains and shortness of breath to another pal, Mr Hall said.
“He knew he was a bit overweight and was getting back into training harder,” he wrote.
“His travel companions from Australia did everything they could, the local ambulance crews got there fast.
“There were no unusual circumstances.”
He called Shane a “legend” – and said that while the word “is used too lightly these days, he is and always will be a legend”.
“Anybody that knew Shane knew his warmth, his caring, his incredible sense of humour, his laugh, the twinkle in his eye and that glare from those glowing, unnaturally white teeth,” he said.
The 52-year-old died of “natural causes”, his autopsy has revealed according to Thai police.
The tragedy has shocked cricket fans across the world as well as those who knew him best.
One friend said he was “full of energy” as he arrived for the five-day sunshine break.
Shane had just finished an “extreme” 14-day diet he called “operation shred” in a bid to get into shape.
His grieving family have now issued a statement as his parents, brother Jason, three children Brooke, Jackson and Summer, and ex-wife Simone Callahan paid tribute.
The family are preparing to fly his body home for a state funeral in Australia.
‘HE WAS A LEGEND’
Parents Keith and Brigette said they are facing a “never-ending nightmare” – and said the tragedy is one “we will never come to terms with”.
“To find words to adequately express our sadness is an impossible task for us and looking to a future without Shane is inconceivable,” they added.
The Aussie hero’s eldest daughter Brooke, 24, and her brother Jackson, 22, hailed their dad the “best father”.
Brooke said: “We were so similar in so many ways and I always used to joke that I got your genes and about how much that annoyed me.
“Well now I couldn’t be happier and prouder that I have your genes. I am lucky and will forever be so proud to call you my Dad forever. I love you to infinity and back and I will miss you forever.”
Jackson added: “Sitting at the poker table, walking around the golf course, watching the Saints and eating pizza is never going to be the same.
“But I know all you ever wanted for me is to be happy, no matter what. You just wanted me to be happy, that’s it.
“So that’s what I’m going to do, try and be happy. I am going to miss you so much Dad and you were truly the best father and mate anyone could’ve asked for.”
Youngest daughter Summer, 20, said their time together was “robbed” in an emotional tribute.
“I wish I could’ve told you that everything was going to be okay and hold your hand. You are the best Dad someone could ever ask for,” she said.
“Our time was robbed. I want more holidays with you, more laughs where your smile lights up the whole room, more ‘goodnight I love you SJ, I’ll see you in the morning’, more talks about how our days were and just to feel safe when you would hug me and you would let me know how proud you are of me and how much you love me.
“You haven’t died Dad, you’ve just moved to a different place, and that is in our heart.”
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