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It is with profound sadness that I pass along a message from FM Nelson Castaneda about the passing of former honorary New Britain
member Gildardo Garcia. Mr. Garcia left this world on the morning of January 15 in the city of Medellin, Colombia, after a long
battle with the
coronavirus. He is survived by his wife, Marta Rendon, and his daughters, Vanessa and Melissa. He died at the young age of 66.
Gildardo was one of the most pleasant chess players to grace our community during the early 2000s. According to Professor Castaneda,
“shared many good moments of chess with some members of our community.”
The GM had quite an impressive chess resume. First and foremost, he was one of the highest-ranked chess players in Colombia,
becoming, in 2008,
country’s second grandmaster. His highest chess rating was 2540, which he achieved in July 1994, and he was ranked fourteenth
Colombia at the time of his death. Early in his chess career, in 1974, he won the inaugural Pan American Junior Chess Championship.
Next, he won the 1989 World Open Chess Championship. Mr. Garcia also won the Colombian Chess Championship ten times and played for
the Olympiads for
While in Connecticut, Gildardo gave a few simultaneous chess exhibitions at the University of Connecticut Chess Club and at the NBCC.
played in a few NBCC team matches with the Springfield, MA, Chess Club. According to the Connecticut State Chess Association records,
Garcia took home first place in the 2009 Connecticut State Open Chess Championship.
I, like those who knew the GM well, had very fond memories of him. He was a caring man who exhibited kindness to all of his chess
last days on this earth were a struggle, but his fighting spirit was strong until the end.
On behalf of the entire NBCC and Connecticut chess community, let us take this time to reflect on the wonderful legacy and life of
one of the
greatest chess legends in our state’s history. Let us pray for peace for Mr. Garcia’s family as they deal with their loss, and may GM
Garcia rest in peace for all eternity.
Jithu Sajeevan, a marketing student at the University of Connecticut and a DIG chess coach, recently attained the level of USCF
his recent win in a quad at the Fairfield County Chess Club. He is a bright young man, and we extend congratulations to him for his
OKTOBERFEST 2020 WINNERS
From left to right - Bill Graham, Rick Schnitzler, Abhijit Mondal, Suhas Kodali, and Mario Guevara-Rodriguez