Ryan paved the way for the sport's popularity here.
Mike Ryan, one of the pioneers for soccer in Washington, died Tuesday morning at his home in Lake City after a long illness. He was 77.
Before Seattle was considered a hotbed for American soccer, Ryan helped organize youth programs and built a struggling Washington men’s soccer program. The native of Dublin was the first U.S. National women’s coach before coaching high-school soccer for Bush, Garfield and Nathan Hale. He was awarded a Golden Scarf by Sounders FC in 2009.
“He was one of — if not the — principal pioneer for soccer in this area,” said Cliff McCrath, longtime Seattle Pacific men’s coach.
Memorial services are pending.
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