Friend Andrew Price remembers Chris Ziadie
Respected local football personality Andrew Price leads the local football fraternity in mourning the passing of long-time friend and teammate Christopher Ziadie, who died yesterday after a prolonged illness in the United States of America (USA).
Price, a former teammate of the midfielder during his years in high school at St George's College and Boys' Town in the National Premier League, describes Ziadie as a brother.
According to Price, Ziadie was a caring and genuine friend to all who knew him personally, despite his outspoken nature. Price said Ziadie's death is a hard pill to swallow.
"He had an illness but he was very private about it. He passed away today (Sunday) overseas," Price said.
"He was more than a teammate. He was a brother. We were very close on and off the field. He was somebody I could depend on and I would do the same for him.
"We knew each other from we were kids and remained very close and despite the distance, we kept close with each other's family. So this one hits hard," Price said.
Price remembers the midfielder as a skilful, competitive player, who gave his all for the team and victory.
"Chris was a talented, skilful player. He is the only individual I have played on so many different teams with.
"One thing, he did things his way. He was a man of integrity but very private and proud. He had this combative spirit when he played, whether at schoolboy or national league level or overseas.
"He was just a competitive player, a warrior on the pitch, but also a really good friend, someone you could always depend on," he continued.
Price insists he is happy to have known Ziadie as a friend and player.
"He was a genuine person that was always willing to tell you what you did not want to hear, even if you don't want to hear it," Price said.
"So even though he was pragmatic and realistic and would tell you whatever was on his mind, as he was brutally honest, he was a confidant and a good friend and this one hits hard because you believe you are relatively young.
"I am happy I was able to share the friendship and brotherhood with him. He was a good teammate but most importantly a good friend," he stated.
Price and Ziadie won back-to-back schoolboy football Manning Cup titles in 1983 and 1984 and the Oliver Shield in 1984.
Ziadie played for Jamaica six times between 1992 and 1993. He hails from a footballing family which includes his father, the late Dennis Ziadie, a former Jamaican international and national coach. His brothers Craig and Nick also represented Jamaica.
In 1989, Ziadie's outspoken personality got him into trouble, while giving a speech at Columbia University's athletic awards banquet.
Ziadie's speech offended several people and he was eventually stopped mid-way through by the athletic director, after some in the audience walked out in protest and fencer David Mandell threw a chair on stage.
Ziadie was 55 years old. He is survived by a daughter and a son.