The wrestling world reacted to the death of legendary referee Dave Hebner, who passed away yesterday at the age of 73.
WWE issued a statement on its WWE.COM website and social media, writing that the company is saddened to learn that the long-time referee has passed away, mentioning some of his memorable matches he officiated and of course the whole Andre/DiBiase angle.
“Following the conclusion of his impressive officiating career, Hebner would work for WWE in a backstage capacity until 2005. WWE extends its condolences to Hebner’s family, friends and fans,” the statement concluded.
Impact Wrestling added, “Impact Wrestling is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Dave Hebner. We offer our sincere condolences to his family and friends during this difficult time.”
Hermie Sadler, a big family friend and former race car driver who published a photo of Dave a few weeks ago, wrote “I am heartbroken to hear of the passing of Dave Hebner. Good man. Great husband and father. Great friend to many. I am so glad I got to see him recently. This man touched a lot of peoples lives and he will be missed.”
Longtime friend Gerald Brisco said the two have been friends since 1970 when the Hefner’s were setting up rings. “Had much respect for the Hebner’s. They were part of the company biggest angle both are deserving to @WWE HOF.”
Referee Charles Robinson wrote that it was sad to hear about the passing of Dave Hebner. “Certainly one of the nicest people I met in this business,” Robinson said. Former referee Tony Chimel also said that Hebner was a nice man and someone who will be missed.
Former WWE Executive Director and WCW President Eric Bischoff replied to Earl Hebner’s tweet and wrote, “Very sorry to hear this Earl. Thoughts are with you and the rest of your family. RIP Dave.”
The Iron Sheik, who worked with Dave Hebner during his time in WWE, wrote in his typical all caps, “Dave Hebner my heart break bubba I love you forever.”
Matt Hardy wrote, “RIP Dave Hebner – You & @TheEarlHebner were always so kind & supportive towards myself & Jeff. I have lots of love for the entire Hebner family. My thoughts go out to your family & friends. Godspeed, Dave.”
WWE producer Hurricane Helms also wrote how Dave was always kind to him while WWE Hall of Famer Sean Waltman described the Hebner twins as two of the nicest people he’s ever crossed paths with in pro wrestling.
“I am so saddened to hear about Dave Hebner’s passing. I adore this whole family so much,” added Gail Kim, who worked with Dave in TNA. “I’ve been so fortunate to be able to work with Dave, Earl, Brian and Katie and I’m thinking of them all today at this sad time. Let’s celebrate Dave’s life. Love to the Hebners.”
Mickie James, who also worked with the Hebner family many times, wrote, “My thoughts and prayers are with all of the Hebner family right now. I’m so saddened to hear of the passing of Dave Hebner. Sending you both @TheEarlHebner
& @babyhebner every bit of my love. Our condolences to your family, friends & all his loved ones. Im so sorry.”