Armand Vaquerin

The Free Spirit

"Outside of rugby, he was a thunderbolt. He played and partied hard, and would have got a lot more caps for France if he had been more focused on his rugby! He would go out anywhere, at any time, and he would be out and away for days sometimes weeks at a time, and he always burned the candle at both ends. But that was him. He loved life. We all still miss him greatly." (Elie Vaquerin)

Armand Vaquerin is a legend in France and is the most celebrated French rugby player in the history of their game, winning the championship 10 times between 1971 and 1984. Tough on the pitch, he was a big character with a huge heart off it, a man of unstinting generosity and loyalty to his friends and the rugby community. On 10 July 1993, tragedy struck when he killed himself playing Russian roulette in a bar in Beziers. I went to meet his brother Elie in June 2018 to find out more about him and discover what happened on the fateful day.

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