Sigi Schmid, the former coach of the Seattle Sounders FC, has died at the age of 65.
What was his cause of death? Although the precise cause of death was not released, he was battling heart issues. In fact, they were so severe that he was hospitalized at the time of his death awaiting a heart transplant.
According to Q13 Fox, Schmid died on December 25, 2018 (Christmas Day) in Los Angeles, California “after being hospitalized at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. He was hospitalized three weeks ago as he awaited a heart transplant.” The Seattle Times reports that his family said he died of a “personal health matter.”
His family released a statement, the television station reported. It reads: “Our family is deeply saddened by his passing and is taking this time to grieve the loss of a tremendous husband, father, leader and mentor. We also recognize how much Sigi meant to so many people across the U.S. Soccer landscape and around the world at different levels of the game. That community meant a great deal to him as well. While we mourn his loss, we appreciate privacy during this challenging time.”
According to The Los Angeles Times, “Schmid was the winningest coach in MLS history with 266 regular and postseason victories over 18 seasons. He led the Galaxy to its first MLS Cup title in 2002.” The Times noted that Schmid “has long had problems with his heart” and was hospitalized in 2009 for pneumonia. According to The Los Angeles Times, Schmid had three sons, a daughter, and a wife, Valerie. He was also a grandfather. In mid-December 2018, The Times reported that Schmid was in intensive care at the hospital. At that time, The Times reported that Schmid was battling both weight and heart issues.
Here’s what you need to know:
Tributes Lauded the Legacy of Sigi Schmid
Major League Soccer was among those offering tributes to the coach, writing on Twitter, “We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of former MLS head coach Sigi Schmid. Our thoughts are with his family and loved ones at this difficult time, and his legacy will continue to live on through the impact he’s made on the game in the United States.” He also coached the Los Angeles Galaxy.
Soccer analyst Alexi Lalas wrote, “When I talk about our American soccer culture, it’s with the respect and recognition that it’s been built by people like Sigi Schmid. I, and so many others, benifitted from his work and influence. He helped change and grow the game and made it better at every level. #ThankYouSigi.”
The Seattle Sounders wrote simply, “Thank you, Sigi. We love you and we miss you.”