Friday, March 10, 2006

Los Angeles Galaxy President & GM Doug Hamilton has died

Wow, this is just horrible news. Doug Hamilton died of an apparent heart attack on the flight home from Costa Rica. Hamilton is one of the main reasons LA has been so successful in the past few years.

"He had a profound impact not only on the Galaxy but on getting the Home Depot Center built," Tim Leiweke, AEG's president and chief executive, said late Thursday night. "But I think more than anything he was a wonderful father.

"He was a good vibrant young man in good health. You assume God has a purpose here, but obviously it's a very devastating loss for soccer in this country, for the league, for the Galaxy and for our organization"

Similar sentiments were voiced by Hamilton's MLS colleagues. Former Galaxy vice president Whit Haskell, now president and general manager of Chivas USA, which shares the Home Depot Center with the Galaxy, had worked alongside Hamilton for the last four years.

"I'm one of many people who owe Doug a lot," Haskell said. "Doug built an unbelievable organization. The Galaxy needed some incredible leadership and Doug came in and he gave it that. He knew exactly what he wanted. He was a very honest and direct manager."

There was another side to Hamilton, though, Haskell said. "As a father and friend, he was a really caring guy," he said. "He was a friend. I owe him so much.

"One other thing that struck me about Doug from the start was the amazing respect that he had from people throughout the soccer community — players, administrators and fans."

He was only 43 years old. He leaves behind his wife Paige and a 5-year-old son.

The Galaxy had planned on training in Costa Rica till Monday, but has now suspended all activities and will fly back to LA tonight.



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