Depressed German goalkeeper Enke ends his life

The 32-year-old international jumps in front of speeding train

Depressed German goalkeeper Enke ends his life


The 32-year-old Enke was hit by the train travelling at 160 kph as it passed through a crossing near Hanover on its route between Hamburg and Bremen on Tuesday.

Enke's wife Teresa said the couple had tried to overcome years of depression through therapy. “When he was acutely depressive it was a very difficult time because he lacked motivation and any hope of improvement,” she told reporters at a news conference.

Enke, who apologised in a suicide letter for hiding the condition leading up to his suicide, tried hard to keep his depression secret. His wife, dressed in black and struggling to hold back tears, said: “It is crazy because now it is coming out anyway. We thought we could do everything and we could do it with love but you can't always do it.”

The German soccer federation cancelled Saturday’s Chile game saying it was necessary for the players and coaches to mourn. “It was clear to everyone that we could not play. “We need time to process all this,” DFB chief Theo Zwanziger told reporters after a minute's silence. Germany team manager Oliver Bierhoff broke down in tears after adding that Enke's depression had gone unnoticed by team mates and officials. German Chancellor Angela Merkel contacted Enke's family. Enke won eight international caps and was in the running to play at the World Cup in South Africa next year.

His doctor had treated Enke since 2003, during a turbulent time when the keeper had several unsuccessful transfers to clubs in Spain and Turkey. “He suffered from depression and fear of failure,” Valentin Markser told reporters.

Markser said the player refused to be treated on the day of his suicide, saying he was feeling well.

After years of battling injuries and personal issues, including the death of his two-year-old daughter due to a heart ailment in 2006, Enke finally appeared poised to grab the number one spot in the national team.

Enke lived in the shadow of Oliver Kahn and Jens Leh-mann for almost a decade.

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