The 54-year-old athlete was a childhood hero of many, after making local history in 1979 as the first Israeli soccer player to sign with a big international team as defender for Liverpool and later with the Glasgow Rangers.
His son Tamir -- himself a promising footballer now playing in England -- had rushed home to be at his father's bedside.
Pray for him, he and the family asked supporters waiting for good news at the hospital and at home. They sought higher help too, meeting with rabbis who came to the hospital to give their blessings.
A week later, Cohen was pronounced brain dead. His heart stopped the following morning.
Fans observed a minute of applause on soccer fields on both sides of the ocean. Liverpoolers wished him a final farewell with their trademark 'YWNA' -- "you'll never walk alone."
Cohen's death united fans but also divided people in a debate about a sensitive issue: organ donation.
Brain death is the point at which relatives are approached for their consent to organ donation. The medical window of opportunity isn't always wide, around 12 hours in this case. Cohen had an organ donor card but his family couldn't bring themselves to act on it.
Initially, they agreed. Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar reportedly called the family, personally urging them to approve; other rabbis discouraged them. Finally,the family decided against it.