Houston (CBS HOUSTON) – On the eve of the first ever MLS Testimonial game, Brian Ching was honored with a retirement party and private roast Thursday night.
At the club Warehouse Live, a corner kick’s distance from BBVA Compass Stadium, fans, friends and family packed in to honor the newly retired Houston Dynamo star.
There was a silent auction benefiting Brian’s favorite charities. Items included signed Landon Donovan jersey, a Brian Ching surfboard and other memorabilia.
Former and current MLS and US National team players took pictures and mingled with the crowd as music played from the band on stage. At the end of the Retirement Party Brian was brought on stage to a line of his family who presented the native Hawaiian with a lei and a warm embrace.
Ching, who won three MLS cups in his career, took the microphone as fans chanted his name and held up Dynamo scarfs.
Brian spoke to the crowd about how honored he was to have played for so long in front of such great fans and with such great team mates. The moment overwhelmed him as tears welled up in eyes. Brian thanked his mom, who hand made 4,000 leis to celebrate the evening, his fiance and the front office of the Dynamo. The front office is where Ching will be headed after his Testimonial game Friday night, staying with the Dynamo in a suit and tie role rather than shorts and a jersey.
After the party, Brian was honored in a private celebration and Roast with about 70 friends family and former teammates. Sarah Pepper, from HOT Hits 95-7, hosted the festivities that saw Eddie Robinson, Jimmy Conrad, Bobby Boswell and others took turns roasting Ching with good humored jabs at him and others in the crowd.
Friday Night those former players and friends will take the field at BBVA Compass Stadium to honor Ching one last time. (Tickets on sale at houstondynamo.com).
Ching will take the field one last time with Brad Davis, Boswell, Donovan, Corey Ashe, Robinson, Conrad, Pat Onsted, Charlie Davies and others.