A WIGAN Athletic fan who was left fighting for his life after a fall at an away game has been welcomed back to the DW Stadium as guest of honour.
Colin Hollinshead suffered two bleeds to his brain when he tumbled down the steps to the concourse during his side’s defeat at Birmingham City on January 10.
The Springfield 67-year-old had to be placed into a drug-induced coma in the Queen Elizabeth hospital’s critical care unit in the Midlands.
Colin, who has season tickets with both Latics and the Warriors, also underwent emergency surgery to relieve the pressure on his brain.
Since the horrifying incident, though, he has made steady progress and on Saturday he was able to watch Latics for the first time in over two months.
He is still residing at a rehab centre at Leigh but is well enough to make visits home.
The family has received constant support from Wigan Athletic and upon hearing he was ready to return to the DW Stadium, they invited him to attend Saturday’s game against Bolton as a special guest with son Martyn.
The pair, who were joined by Martyn’s partner Mel and stepson Thomas, dined at Rigalettos before taking up their seats in the directors’ box behind chairman David Sharpe and owner Dave Whelan. Also in front of them was someone else who was once left fighting for their lives after a football match in ex-Bolton player Fabrice Muamba.
“It was a great day for my dad,” said Martyn.
“I got asked a while ago. They said when he’s feeling a lot better to ring them and they’ll sort a VIP day for him.
It was great to see Dad so happy after everything. From where he was to where he is now is unbelievableColin’s son Martyn
“Julie Lavin at Latics sorted everything out for us; she was absolutely fantastic.
“She couldn’t do enough for us. Whatever I asked her for, she always said ‘no problem’.”
Colin, who also attended the Warriors’ victory over Hull FC in his wheelchair, appeared to be somewhat of a good luck charm for Malky Mackay’s side as they produced one of their better performances to draw 1-1.
After his fall, Latics drew with Blackburn but have lost every other home match since, failing to score in the last five. And the good news for Latics fans is that he’s hoping to be there for the Derby County game too.
“It was great to see Dad so happy after everything. From where he was to where he is now is unbelievable,” added Martyn.
“He was taken to the changing rooms to meet all the players and get his programme signed. He was buzzing. He’s taking it step by step now. He has got some brain damage, he’s more of a chatterbox now where he was a bit quiet before and he’s a bit more anxious at the minute.
“I think he wants to go to the Derby game on Easter Monday and he definitely wants to go to the Wigan v Saints game on Good Friday.”