Ice hockey referee dies after being struck by puck

Updated: 

The chairman of the Czech Ice Hockey Association's officiating committee has paid tribute to Pavel Lainka after the referee died at the aged of 24 as a result of being struck on the head by a puck.

Lainka was hit on the side of his head during an Under-16 exhibition match between Brno and Sumperk on August 25.

The former junior and minor hockey league player suffered severe injuries, but died in hospital a fortnight after the tragic accident.

"He was exceptionally active and successful and also one of the first absolvents of the referee of collective sports major at the Masaryk University in Brno," said Vladimir Sindler, chairman of the Czech Ice Hockey Association's officiating committee.

"Many remember Pavel not just from the ice rink and seminars, but also as a friend, who was always happy and smiling and was an amazing team-mate."