A legend of Para Ice Hockey, Russian Sergey Samoylov, has passed away putting a sad note to the end of the World Championships on Thursday.
Samoylov has been a strong part of the World Para Ice Hockey community having served as a member of the World Para Ice Hockey Sport Technical Committee. He was serving in that position until his death, as the Regional Liaison Officer for Europe, and was attending the World Championships as an observer.
“He was a committed member of the World Para Ice Hockey Sport Technical Committee and an exceptional coach who dedicated a lot of time and energy to the development of the sport. This is demonstrated by the fact that he travelled to Gangneung to watch the World Championships in an unofficial capacity, just for the love of the game.” Said International Paralympic Committee President, Sir Phillip Craven.
His commitment to Para Ice Hockey goes beyond his official role within the sporting federation and includes time with his native Russia. Samoylov served as the head coach of Russia and won a silver medal at the 2014 Paralympic Games and bronze at the 2015 World Championships.
Because of the loss to the Para Ice Hockey community a minutes silence was observed at the closing ceremony of the tournament in an emotional moment for the whole of the sport. The loss of Samoylov is especially big for Russia who are currently barred from participating in the sport due to the International Paralympic Committee suspension, hopefully this will not result in the sport in Russia never recovering.