Rising NRL star Liam Hampson found dead in Barcelona
A rising NRL star who disappeared on an end-of-season trip to Europe has been found dead on the floor of a Barcelona nightclub in what police believe was a tragic accident.
Redcliffe Dolphins star Liam Hampson, 24, was on holiday with Gold Coast Titans fullback Alexander ‘AJ’ Brimson and Brisbane Broncos stars Jordan Riki and Jesse Arthars when he suddenly disappeared.
In a frantic social media post on Wednesday night, Brimson explained that Hampson had not been seen since visiting Spanish bar Sala Apolo at 4:30 a.m. on Tuesday.
After a 30-hour search, Barcelona police confirmed to AEDT early Thursday that a lifeless body believed to be Hampson had been found at the scene.
“This morning staff at the nightclub where Liam was last seen found a body on the floor in an area of the nightclub, Sala Apolo,” police said in a statement. The Spanish newspaper El Mundo police report that Hampson may have fallen from a height of 10 meters.
Hampson’s father and sister have since confirmed the sad news in heartbreaking social media posts.
Redcliffe Dolphins star Liam Hampson (pictured) has been tragically found dead in Barcelona
The rising NRL star (left) paid tribute to his mother Lorna Morton (right) on Mother’s Day earlier this year
Liam Hampson was found dead on the floor by staff at Barcelona nightclub Sala Apolo (pictured). He would have fallen from a height of 10 meters
“Waking up to the news that no one wants to hear, we are devastated to learn that Liam had an accident and sadly did not survive,” his father Brett posted on Facebook.
“We are heartbroken, to say the least. Liam had a heart of gold and was a much loved son, brother, grandson, uncle and friend. Words cannot express our grief.
“We can’t thank his friends enough for being there with Liam to have the best time of his life and helping with the search for our boy. Our thoughts are with them.
Hampson’s sister Tiarna posted a similar tribute hours after she made a desperate plea to find him. “We are so heartbroken,” she posted.
“Liam was the best brother I could ever ask for and made me a better person. We cannot express our sorrow.
“We cannot thank the boys he was traveling with enough for helping him in his search and making his last days the best of his life.
“I will miss you so much, Liam.”
This is one of the last photos of Liam Hampson (pictured far right) enjoying the views of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
Brett Hampson (right) was very proud of his son Liam (centre) as a promising rugby league star. Brett’s wife (left) is also pictured
Brimson reacted to Tiarna’s tribute with a heart emoji.
The family have asked for privacy as they come to terms with the heartbreaking loss.
Hours earlier, Brimson made a desperate plea to find Hampson.
“Could not be contacted and no one has seen him for 24 hours… was traveling with a group and very out of character, any info would be greatly appreciated,” the Queensland Origin star captioned a photo of Hampson wearing the clothes. he was last seen in – a black t-shirt, shorts, and a light-colored baseball cap.
‘Please don’t message me unless you have help or information. We are busy trying to message family members etc. Thanks!’
Riki also reposted the photo with a message asking for help finding him, which was also shared by the Broncos.
‘Please help or share this [message] it’s very scary for all of us, he’s our best friend, we want to find him,’ Riki wrote on his Instagram.
Arthars posted a simple prayer emoji on a black background on his Instagram Stories.
Just two days earlier, Brimson posted one of Hampson’s last photos in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
The couple were longtime friends at school and attended renowned rugby league institution Keebra Park State High School.
Hampson and Brimson were also teammates with the Tweed Seagulls.
Redcliffe Dolphins player Liam Hampson was a rising star in Queensland rugby league. He is pictured signing autographs for young fans after a finals game last month
Hours before his death was confirmed, Gold Coast Titans fullback AJ Brimson posted a photo of his friend, Liam Hampson, in the clothes he was last seen in.
Liam Hampson (right) was traveling around Europe with NRL star AJ Brimson (left) and other friends. Pictured, the couple enjoy the sights of Amsterdam
Hampson (top left) on his European vacation with other young rugby league stars, including Jordan Riki (front left)
Liam Hampson (far right) with his Australian friends on the European trip. Police are treating his death as a tragic accident
Hampson’s death has rocked the rugby league world in Queensland.
“I never thought I would wake up to hear the devastating news,” wrote photographer and friend Dylan Parker.
“Liam was a crazy rugby league player, but he was an even better person.” Always came to chat before and after each match, he always had a smile on his face and was always so positive. He will be missed by everyone.
Hampson had vacationed in Europe with Brimson, Riki, and Arthars.
The group of pals have posted dozens of photos from their adventure-filled travels over the past month, including snaps of Paris, Ibiza, Amsterdam, attending Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany and Positano in Italy.
“You were a Positano treat,” Hampson said six days ago.
Hampson had played four years in the Queensland Cup, moving from Tweed Head Seagulls to Redcliffe at the end of 2021.
Hampson played hooker for the Redcliffe Dolphins and recently helped his side qualify for the Queensland Cup grand final, where they were narrowly beaten 16-10 by the Norths Devils.
The Dolphins will make their NRL debut next season under coaching legend Wayne Bennett.
Hampson is not part of the club’s top team.
Queensland soccer player Liam Hampson has had the trip of a lifetime with some soccer buddies. He is pictured in Positano, Italy, a week ago
Liam Hampson (right) in Paris watching Lionel Messi play football