The world of handball today lost two highly respected members. The German referees Bernd and Reiner Methe passed away tonight, at the age of 47, as a result of a frontal collision, when they were on the way to handle the Bundesliga game between Balingen and Magdeburg. The game was of course cancelled after the shocked players and spectators learned of the reason why the referees had not shown up.
Bernd and Frank were top level referees together for well over 20 years, and had been at the service of the IHF and the EHF at numerous World and European Championships since 1998. Perhaps the highlight of their career was the assignment to the final of the 2010 Men’s European Championship. They were nominated for the Women’s World Championship next month.
The Methe twins were known and respected around the world for their competence, integrity and solid personalities. They were persons who could be trusted with the toughest games in the most difficult atmosphere. And they were great members of the circle of referees, both in their home country and internationally.
All of us who had the privilege of knowing Bernd and Frank will keep fond memories of our encounters with them. Our deepest sympathy goes to their wives, children and other family.