(From Left to Right, George Towner, Mac MacLaughlin, Mary Bevis and Steve Spangler - Arlington Soccer Brakfast Club)
George Towner, one of the co-founders of the Arlington Soccer Association, a man who dedicated so much of his life to the game of soccer passed away on October 25 at Goodwin House in Alexandria at the age of 90.
George was one of the true pioneers of Virginia soccer. He founded the Potomac Kiwanis Soccer Club in 1969, and has served as President, Treasurer, Coach, and Club Manager. In 1970, he co-founded the Arlington Soccer Association, serving as an officer and continuing as a Board member for many years.
George was elected President of the Virginia Youth Soccer Association (VYSA) in 1982, serving until 1985. During his tenure, VYSA membership grew from 6,000 to 31,000. Towner also established the VYSA Newsletter. Towner has served as US Youth Soccer (USYSA) Sub Regional Director, USYSA Regional Director, and on the US Soccer Federation (USSF) Board of Directors. He has held numerous committee chairmanships with both USYSA and USSF.
George wrote a weekly soccer column for the Northern Virginia Sun. Some of his honors include:
- Arlington Interservice Club Council’s “Man of the Year” for youth soccer development (1970)
- Virginia Parks and Recreation Society’s award for “Outstanding Support and Achievement for Volunteer Services” (1973)
- Better Sports Club as the Arlington “Sportsman of the Year” (1989)
- Arlington Soccer Association “Soccer Person of the Year” (1982 & 2010)
George was inducted into the Virginia Youth Soccer Hall of Fame in 2001 & the Arlington soccer Hall of Fame 2010. In 2017 Arlington Soccer Association created the “George Towner Soccer Service Award”.
This award calls attention to superior service and great support for soccer provided by an Arlington Soccer Association staff person or volunteer. It celebrates stellar service, a can-do attitude, and positive disposition.
“George was a legend in the youth soccer community and in Arlington. He was truly an extraordinary human being who will be dearly missed” said Frank DeMarco, Arlington Soccer Interim Executive Director.
George leaves behind his 5 children, 8 grandchildren (Bryn, Patrick, Zachary, Zoe, Aileen, Natalie, Clara, and Rachel,) and one great grandchild (Reese.)