Philadelphia Union Defender Ray Gaddis Inspires Others On And Off The Field


Ray Gaddis played 3,051 minutes during the 2014 MLS season; the most by an MLS player during 2014 and the second ever Philadelphia Union player to log over 3,000 minutes in a season. While he has solidified himself within the Union’s starting XI and signed a contract extension this year, he’s actions on and off the field inspire others.

“If you work hard, good things will come to you.” – Ray Gaddis

On social media, Gaddis started a Twitter account called @_Inspiraytion where he tweets out daily different things in the hopes inspiring his fans. Earlier on Thursday, he tweeted this out. His inspiring tweets are also seen on Instagram and Facebook.

On the field, Gaddis’ hard work ethic, drive, and motivation is clearly seen as he looks to stymie opposing strikers. As he told’s Dave Zeitlin by phone on Wednesday, his goal is to always shut down the opposing strikers.

"“There’s no better feeling than seeing a forward frustrated,” he said. “If he gets subbed off, you know you did your thing. … I want to shut them all down. I want to keep them all off the stat sheet. I don’t even want them to get a shot off. No assists, no nothing.”"

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Gaddis allows his play to speak for him. He’s not a man of few words, but he’s not one of the many cocky athletes in sports today. Despite his success, Gaddis has remained grounded and humble on and off the field. Actions speak louder than words and for Gaddis both of them are aligned.

Even outside of the 90-minute (or longer) games, Gaddis is a favorite among the fans. Each week Gaddis picks his fan of the week on Instagram. While this isn’t anything majorly special, it shows Gaddis cares and is appreciative of the fans passion and attendance during every game.

In addition, Philadelphia Union players have had the privilege to hang out with young fans during practices throughout the season as well. Gaddis spent the day with one of the March of Dimes and Comcast Sportsnet’s Shining Stars. Amelia Keppel and her entire family enjoyed a day with the Union during practice. During the time Gaddis and Amelia hung out together. Watch the feature below.

It’s moments like that where Gaddis is also inspired by those he influences. Likewise, these times with the fans are why he has become a fan favorite in the City of Brotherly Love among the Sons of Ben and other Union supporters.

In a season with many disappointing moments, Gaddis’ play was a bright spot. Until “Gaddis Island”, as interim team manager Jim Curtin donned it complementing his young defender’s play, returns in 2015, Ray Gaddis will continue to live a live filled with many heartwarming and inspiring moments through his actions and words off the field and in the community.

Quotes courtesy of Dave Zeitlin of