Former Galt High soccer star Arath Chavez died on Tuesday, according to a press release from Sacramento State University, where he was on the soccer team.

Chavez was in Southern California when he was involved in a motorcycle accident, said Galt High co-coach Dane White, who was Chavez’s high school coach along with Alfredo Renteria.

“He’s one of those kids that everyone adored,” White said. “We loved him as a teammate, as a player, and just as a human being. He was always so good natured. He just had that kind of spirit about him.”

Chavez, a 20-year-old who was born in Mexico, was a central part of Galt High’s soccer success, and was also a member of the Future Farmers of America. His impact was felt throughout the Galt community, not just among his teammates.

“Coach Alfredo and I are working hard to reach out and be there for them, any way we can in the COVID era, and offer some support,” White said. “My phone has to get recharged a lot throughout the day.”

Chavez graduated from Galt in 2018 after helping his teams go 80-7-11, and signed on to play for Sacramento State. He also spent seven years as a key player for Galt FC United.

As a Hornet, he redshirted as a freshman, and then was one of the top options off the bench as a redshirt freshman in 2019, with five assists and two goals in 18 matches.

“Arath was such a positive influence on everyone — always upbeat and energetic with a smile on his face,” said Sacramento State soccer coach Mike Linenberger in a Wednesday press release. “He was dearly loved by his teammates and our staff. He will be missed immensely by all of us in his Hornet family and by everyone who knew him.”

White has set up a GoFundMe to help the family with expenses, under the Arath Chavez Memorial Fund. As of Thursday evening, after being up for 27 hours, the fund was closing in on $40,000.

“It’s a testament to who that kid was,” White said. “You don’t donate because you admire his athleticism, you donate because of who he is.”

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