Soccertown USA honors hometown soccer heroes Fritz Schmid and son, Sigi Schmid: From left, Torrance Mayor Frank Scotto; long-time AYSO referee Fritz Schmid; Valerie Schmid, wife of Seattle Sounders coach Sigi Schmid, an original AYSO player in the inaugural season in 1964; and Roland Schmid, of Seattle, Sigi’s brother, are honored Tuesday evening by the Torrance City Council for their contributions to soccer in the South Bay.
On the same evening AYSO announced Torrance would co-host the 2014 National Games in the community where the nonprofit was founded 50 years ago, the city honored long-time Torrance residents Fritz Schmid and his son, Sigi, former coach of UCLA, the Galaxy, Columbus Crew and currently, the Seattle Sounders.
Sigi Schmid moved to the city from Germany with his parents as a child and didn’t move away until he took the jobs in Columbus and Seattle.
“There’s a lot of East Coast guys who are discovering what we knew all along,” Sigi Schmid told the City Council, “that Torrance is basically where soccer was born as an American sport and truly became engrained in the American culture. It was always part of the United States, but it was part of the immigrant (experience).
“Torrance is the birthplace of that. It’s something Torrance will always be proud of and I’m proud to have been associated with it and to be associated with AYSO all these years.”
Here are the pair of proclamations honoring father and son: