A San Diego semi-professional football team is dedicating its 2019 season to a former teammate who was killed in a motorcycle accident.
Former San Diego Silverbacks player James Haiman, 29, was killed in a motorcycle crash Monday night at the intersection of Genesee Avenue and Balboa Avenue.
At their first practice since Haiman’s passing, Silverbacks head coach Elliot Limbrick told his team if there was a picture in the dictionary next to the word “man,” it would be Haiman’s picture.
"He was a standup guy. I want your attitudes to emulate his,” Limbrick told his team as they huddled at the end of practice.
Limbrick said Haiman was always there for his team whenever they needed him, and they could always count on him to be present at community events spreading the word about the team.
A GoFundMe page was created to help Haiman's family during this time.
Investigators said Haiman lost control of his motorcycle when he crashed. According to the Medical Examiner's report, he died of blunt force trauma to the head.
"My heart hurt and I was mad. I lost I lost we lost somebody who was near and dear,” Limbrick said.
Silverbacks General Manager Lisa Acedo called Haiman a hard worker who was a plumber by trade. She said he worked as hard for the team off the field as he did on it.
Haiman volunteered much of his time supporting the team's image in the community and helping other players grow. It earned him the Most Dedicated Player award last season.
“A guy like that is the type of person you would not only want in your organization, but a part of your family,” Limbrick said. “I don't know how long it is going to take or how we are going to get through this.”
A celebration of life will be held for Haiman at the Silverbacks’ game on February 9 at Clairemont High School. The team has planned a moment of silence before the game in his honor.
"Every game, every minute on the field, every time we put on Silverbacks apparel or uniform we will think of James,” Limbrick said.