- Associated Press - Sunday, July 6, 2014

LIVONIA, Mich. (AP) - A funeral for a soccer referee who authorities say died of a punch to the neck from a player has been scheduled for Thursday.

A family friend of John Bieniewicz announced the funeral plans Sunday. Bieniewicz, 44, died Tuesday from injuries he sustained June 29 when authorities say a player who objected to being ejected from an adult men’s league game hit him. His heart, kidneys, liver, lungs and other organs were donated for transplantation into others.

In an email Sunday, James Acho said that Bieniewicz’s funeral would be at 11 a.m. Thursday at Hosana Lutheran Church in Redford. Viewings will be held from 2-9 p.m. Tuesday and 2-7 p.m. Wednesday at Harry J. Will Funeral Home in Livonia, Acho said.

The Wayne County prosecutor’s office charged Baseel Abdul-Amir Saad, 36, of Dearborn with assault with intent to do great bodily harm. Prosecutors have said that they were reviewing the charges in light of Bieniewicz’s death.

Defense lawyer Brian Berry has said that his client isn’t guilty of the charges.

Bieniewicz was honored Sunday with a moment of silence at a game between the Detroit City Futbol Club and the Cincinnati Saints played on the field at Cass Technical High School in Detroit.

Fans quietly raised red cards at the 44th minute of the game, MLive.com reported.

“It’s a horrible tragedy. It should never have happened. It’s just senseless,” said Gene Butcher, member of a Detroit City Futbol Club fans group called Northern Guard Supporters that handed out the cards and organized the memorial.

An online fundraising drive for the referee’s family had raised $110,000 by Sunday evening, according to its website.

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