Brian (left) and Larry Sayles. (Photo courtesy of the Milwaukee Wave)
Milwaukee Wave equipment manager Brian Sayles has passed away.
Sayles was the son of Wave director of soccer operations Larry Sayles.
“Brian was known and loved by players, fans, coaches, and executives over his decades with our sport,” the Major Arena Soccer League said on its website. “Thank you for all you have done Brian! Rest in Peace!”
When he was four, Sayles had a brain tumor and had experienced some cognitive and physical challenges. Yet, he never let that get in the way of his job.
“I know the guys,” he was quoted by fox6now.com in 2019. “The guys have been with me. I know who needs stuff and who doesn’t need stuff.
“I like what I do.”
So did the Wave players.
“Obviously, he’s got things that he’s dealing with and it’s cool for us to be able to help him and give him this opportunity to be around the team and do something and be a part of something he loves,” all-star defender Drew Ruggles told the website.
His father, who has been with the Wave since the club began in 1984, was the team athletic trainer. While he was inducted into the Wisconsin Athletic Trainers Hall of Fame, there was something more special than that – working with his son.
“On those tough days, I can still look at him and I can smile and thank the Lord that he’s with us,” Larry Sayles told Fox6now. “There’s a lot of kids that had his cancer that are not with us anymore, so we’re really blessed to have him in our life.”
Before Milwaukee won the 2019 MASL championship, Larry Sayles knew what he was going to do.
“When we do win that championship this year, we’re going to be right together, hugging,” he was quoted by Fox6now. “He’s my best friend, he’s my son, and he is my co-worker, but he’s my best friend and son first.”