SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — One of the Sacramento Republic FC’s well-known fans died after a battle with colon cancer, the club announced in a press release.
Shaun “Crash” Kitka was a member of the Tower Bridge Battalion, the team’s supporter group, and a season ticket holder for many seasons, according to the club.
Kitka made “an indelible impression on the supporter’s section and the entire club, from the front office to all of the boys in Old Glory Red,” the Republic FC said in the release.
“‘Crash’ was a shining example of the passion our fans have for this club. His infectious energy, dedication, and generosity will be sorely missed but forever with us,” Republic FC President and General Manager Todd Dunivant said in a statement.
“Our hearts are with his friends, family, loved ones, and fellow supporters. Thank you Crash for putting your stamp on our club culture, which will now endure forever.”
The Republic FC’s next home match is on Saturday, Sept. 10 against Loudoun United FC. The club said it will take a moment to salute Kitka and celebrate his life at the match.
Upon learning his diagnosis, Kitka would often bring awareness to colon cancer, often sharing his screenings.
Last season, the club presented Kitka with the Kevin Nagle Indomitable Spirit Award during a home match against the New York Red Bulls II. He was presented with the award for his work to improve resources for patients and survivors.
The club also made a $1,000 donation in his name to the Colon Cancer Alliance, the nation’s largest non-profit for colon cancer patient support.
“It was very tough news to wake up to,” Republic FC head coach Mark Briggs said in a statement prior to the U.S. Open Cup final. “We know how special he was to our supporters and to this football club. Hopefully, tomorrow we can play for Crash and win a trophy and make him proud.”