When the term "diehard fan" is used, a lot of things come to mind. Loyal, passionate and an unconditional love for your team. All of those things and more describe Chris Matalas, better known as CaliCuse to Syracuse fans. Unfortunately, Chris passed away on Wednesday at the age of 71.
CaliCuse has been a consistent contributor to both CuseNation.com and the SyracuseFan.com message boards.
In fact, he has been a subscriber to the Syracuse Scout site since 2005. Even through some rough transitions, he stayed a loyal member. Even without a dedicated Syracuse publisher at times. Why? He loved the Orange and wanted every piece of information and interaction with other Syracuse fans he could get.
That unwavering love and passion is something we can all learn from. Everyone should hope to cherish something as much as Chris did Syracuse Orange athletics.
Chris was a lifelong Syracuse fan who grew up in Central New York. He attended North Syracuse high school and always loved the Orange. He was forced to move out of the area after suffering a stroke in 2002. The harsh winters were simply too much in his new condition. So he and his wife, Diane, relocated to California.
Chris had two sons, Gregg and Terry. Gregg, Terry and Diane took him to the last Syracuse game he would ever attend back in 2011 when the football Orange played at USC. Prior to relocating, Chris was a longtime football season ticket holder.
Many Syracuse fans considered Chris a friend, despite having never met him. This due to the many memorable interactions they had online. Many have expressed their condolences either on message boards or via social media. That goes to show the reach Chris had amongst the Syracuse fan base.
Thoughts and prayers with his loved ones as they grieve his loss.
May you rest in peace Chris. We'll all miss you buddy.