Last Tuesday, the Brazilian club Chapecoense was on the way to Medellin, Colombia to cap off a remarkable season with the first leg of a two-leg tie against Colombian giants Atlético Nacional in the Copa Sudamericana final, the South American equivalent of the Europa League. The moment was supposed to be the culmination of a wild ride that saw the tiny provincial squad fighting their way up the from fourth division of Brazilian soccer in 2009 to battling—and beating—some of the continent’s best sides in this season’s Copa. Instead, the fairytale ended in tragedy when the plane carrying the team crashed into the mountains near Medellin.

Of the 77 passengers on the charter flight from Bolivia to Medellin, 71 were killed in the wreckage, including coaches, technical staff, journalists and 19 of the team’s players. It appears that the plane ran out of fuel over Colombia, with the pilot radioing in a “fuel emergency” moments before crashing, corroborated by the absence of an explosion post impact.

Newspapers and investigators have raised serious questions about the airline Lamia’s fueling protocol in the wake of the crash. The distance between their Bolivian origin and Medellin was slightly outside the plane’s range, and as such, the plane also lacked the 30 minutes of additional fuel aviation experts say is a necessary precaution. Further, the pilot reportedly waved off a refueling stop in Cobija. Lamia’s reputation as a cut-rate charter operator raises further questions about the procedures and is particularly disturbing because the Argentinian National Team flew on the same doomed plane just two weeks before.

Hailing from Chapecó, a small provincial city of 210,000 in the south of Brazil, the Chapecoense had only been a professional side since the mid-1970s. Even before the Copa success, Chape had earned comparisons to Leicester City, the Premier League club who rose from similar lower league obscurity to capture last season’s title.

The club rose through the ranks in Brazil on the back of investments in training facilities and infrastructure and sound management that is rare in Brazilian soccer. This season, Chape was on track to finish a club record ninth in the league before the tragedy. Like Leicester, they found success on the back of journeymen like top scorer Bruno Rangel and captain Cléber Santana, most famous for brief stints at Atlético Madrid and Mallorca in Spain. The story of lovable underdogs clad in green and white punching above their weight and slaying giants like Argentina’s San Lorenzo earned them the admiration of fans continent-wide.

On Monday, the South American Football Confederation, CONMEBOL, declared Chapecoense the winner of the Copa Sudamericana, after Atlético Nacional asked them to award Chape the title to honor the victims of the crash. Other outpourings of support have come from Brazil’s top clubs, who offered to loan players to the club for next season in order to help get them back on their feet.

As tragic and gutting as such an incident may be, the crash will not spell the end of Chapecoense. Albeit to a lesser scale, Manchester United lost eight players to the Munich air disaster in 1958 and eventually rose to even greater heights. Part of what precipitated Chape’s meteoric rise from fourth division obscurity to competing for a major continental championship was their grit and determination, along with sound management. If history is any indicator, the club and its future squad will pull on those same traits to ensure that it and the memory of those lost do not go gentle into that Brazilian night (to paraphrase a better writer than myself).

Arsenal’s Brazilian defender Gabriel Paulista played under Chapecoense manager Caio Júnior and was obviously stricken by the crash. On the verge of tears, he said, “If you think you want to do something, just get out there and do it, because we don’t know what tomorrow brings.” I don’t mean to end on too sentimental a note, but his words seem especially sage in the wake of tragedy. Go out and do something you’ve been putting off today.