Former IIHF referee Rafael Kadyrov passed away on Thursday after serious illness. He was battling with a brain tumour.
Kadyrov was born on 4 April 1969 in Ufa, Russia. He has been officiating since 1998/99 and last September he reached the mark of 700 games in the top Russian league.
As an IIHF referee he officiated in the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship in 2009 and 2010, in two World Junior Championships (2006, 2011) and two U18 World Championships (2005, 2008) including the gold medal game of the 2005 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship and the bronze medal game of the 2009 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship.
“We knew Rafa as a person who always had a sparkle in his eyes and a great smile on his face when he was officiating games,” recalls IIHF Officiating Manager Konstantin Komissarov. “He was a person who committed himself completely to officiating and worked his way up from the bottom to the top in his officiating career. He loved the life. Rafa’s dedication to officiating and to be the best is a great example for young on-ice officials.”
Kadyrov officiated in 19 KHL games this season until his health condition didn’t allow him to work games anymore. He is survived by his wife and two children.