Footballers to remember Gonzalo with ‘minute of silence’

Gonzalo McLaughlin 1980 - 2020

When the CIFA Men’s Premier League and the CIFA Women’s league resume for their final round of matches this weekend, a minute of silence will be held prior to play in memory of former footballer and coach, Gonzalo McLaughlin, who died in a car crash in the early hours of Saturday, 8 August 2020.

The 39-year-old, who was a driving force behind Tigers FC, was pronounced dead at hospital after the single-vehicle collision in Bodden Town. He would have turned 40 this month.

Cayman Islands Football Association President, Alfredo Whittaker, stated that it was “with great sadness and grief” that he learned of McLaughlin’s death.

“Gonzalo had been a valued member of our football family and Tigers FC as a coach and administrator, his commitment to youth football was admirable and he will be deeply missed,” Whittaker stated in a letter to CIFA membership.

“On behalf of the Cayman Islands Football Association and its Executive Committee, I share this sad moment with our football community and friends, as a gesture of remembrance of Gonzalo, CIFA will respect a minute of silence in all its scheduled matches for the month of August,” he added.

President of Future Sports Club, Sarah Orrett, was among those paying tribute to McLaughlin on social media.

“Today was a sad day for all,” she posted. “Over the years, we shared many ideas on the ever-evolving sport of football. We shared moments of deep discussion personally and professionally.”

She recalled McLauglin once saying to her “We are not only a coach, you know. We are a friend, a mentor, a father or mother figure, a provider, a counsellor, an advisor, a chauffeur, and a motivator.”

“And that’s what you were to us all! It was a privilege and honour to compete against your beloved team, Tigers FC,” Orrett stated, adding “it’s a sad day for football”.

McLaughlin also worked at Butterfield Bank, who also paid tribute. “Gonzalo was a big personality working within our Operations team, where he had worked for the past 20 years. He was dedicated, hardworking, and a true team player,” the bank posted on social media.

“In his spare time Gonzalo, who was an avid sports fan, dedicated time to coaching for the Cayman Islands Little League and the Tigers Football Club, which he started several years ago to provide an outlet and training for Cayman youths.”

Cayman Sports Buzz joins in extending condolences to Gonzalo’s family and loved ones.

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