Devon referee Brian Cummins dies after collapse during game
A football referee has died after collapsing during a boys' cup final.
Brian Cummins, who was in his early 60s, was refereeing an Under-16s final in Elburton, Devon, on Sunday when he fell to the ground.
He was taken to Derriford Hospital in Plymouth but died shortly after, the Devon Junior Minor League said.
A spokesman said: "Our thoughts and condolences at this time are with his family. The league has lost a very loyal referee."
The game between Woolwell Juniors and Tavistock was abandoned after Mr Cummins collapsed.
His daughter Sarah said: "He was a loving father, father in law, granddad, husband and friend to all who knew him. He loved his football and refereeing.
"He will be greatly missed by all and will forever be in our hearts."
Brian Rimes, general secretary of the league, said former Devonport dockyard worker Mr Cummins had been a referee for the league for about 20 years.
"He was a very good referee, a man well respected by youngsters and the referee fraternity," he said.
Mark Davies wrote on the league's Facebook page: "Very sad news indeed and our thoughts go out to Brian's family and friends. It's a shame that it takes such awful circumstances to unite the local footballing community but in Brian we know we have lost a true gent. RIP Brian."
Mark Evans wrote: "RIP Brian. Grassroots football has lost an amazing guy and great referee. Deepest sympathies from all Devon FA referees."
Michael Davies tweeted: "#RIP Brian Cummins, such sad news! Top Ref, top neighbour but most of all a top bloke! Will be sadly missed."