ITV pays tribute to Technical Director, Roger Pearce, after death at Qatar World Cup
ITV's Technical Director, Roger Pearce, has died while working on the World Cup in Qatar.
Roger, who had worked at ITV for 43 years, passed away suddenly in his hotel overnight.
He had been due to retire on 31st December.
In a statement, Mark Demuth, ITV Controller of Sport, said: "It is with extreme sadness and sorrow that I have to tell you Roger Pearce passed away overnight at his hotel in Qatar.
"I appreciate this desperate news will come as a great shock to everyone. His immediate family have been informed as have the team working here in Doha.
"Roger has been such a popular figure in the department for many years. Anyone who worked with Roger enjoyed his company and couldn't help but smile when he was around.
"Roger was the person who made it all happen - whether he was on-site at a minor non-League ground or working across a complex technical operation such as this World Cup.
"Everyone is feeling numb at the moment and sharing a dreadful sense of loss.
"Let's look out for each other, as Roger would have done, and never forget the incredible contribution he made to the department and all our lives. Roger was one of a kind."
ITV Sport paid tribute to Roger during ITV's coverage of the Wales v USA game on Monday night.
Roger, a former Technical Operations Manager at ITV News Meridian for many years, had visited the newsroom in Whiteley just two weeks ago as part of his 'pre-retirement tour'.
ITV Meridian's Head of News, Alison Nice, said: "Roger was loved and respected by all who worked with him. The sad news of his death has come as a terrible shock to everyone."
Lisa Nichols, ITV Meridian's Operations Manager, said: "Roger was an excellent engineer who would always find new ways to overcome technical problems.
"His vast experience made him a brilliant manager and a fantastic mentor to many of us too. He was simply a one off and as a much loved friend and colleague, he will be so missed by us all."
Other people within the industry, who had worked with Roger over the years took to Twitter to pay tribute.