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Ezra Castro (Pancho Billa) has passed away

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Edited by LGR4GM
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When his partner said they were sedating him yesterday, I knew the end was very near.  He's been in hospice for a while.  He was the president of our local Bills Backers.  He kept a positive outlook right up until the end.  Godspeed, Ezra.

Edited by Doohickie
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31 minutes ago, Doohickie said:

When his partner said they were sedating him yesterday, I knew the end was very near.  He's been in hospice for a while.  He was the president of our local Bills Backers.  He kept a positive outlook right up until the end.  Godspeed, Ezra.

Ever meet him?   RIP, True Fan to the End.

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Good.  That's too long to suffer.

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I will be showing my kids that video tonight and letting them know that THAT is what it means to be the best human being possible and the best Buffalo Bills fan possible.

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21 minutes ago, CallawaySabres said:

I will be showing my kids that video tonight and letting them know that THAT is what it means to be the best human being possible and the best Buffalo Bills fan possible.

Why is this important? 

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1 hour ago, SDS said:

Why is this important? 

It was very important to Ezra.

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1 hour ago, SDS said:

Why is this important? 

It just is to Callaway... why question?

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5 minutes ago, Doohickie said:

It was very important to Ezra.

Why is being the best X fan possible important to a child?

1 minute ago, North Buffalo said:

It just is to Callaway... why question?

Because it is odd. Everyone is different, but it is hard to imagine why this would be considered important enough to sit your kid down for life lesson time.

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Just now, SDS said:

Why is being the best X fan possible important to a child?

Because children need to understand that being a sports fan is the best way to have your debilitating illness used as a promotional tool by people and organizations seeking to elevate their public standing. 

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^ because if left to chance, fate, or circumstance, they may grow up to be Leaf, Bruin, Flyer or Patriot fans.  I still think of Lewiston-Porter’s Daryl Johnston and his absentee family.  Oh, the shame ...  a Dolphins Jersey for his birthday!

Edited by Neo
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Corrupted in less than a page... sad.

I'm not a Bills fan any longer.  I'm not even a football fan.  The dude certainly put his heart and passion into the team and the sport.  He's too damn young (everyone is, every time). We should all be so lucky to find something we can be that passionate about in life. 

When I see this story (and have seen the past updates) I simply look at it as a team and a fan coming together when the fan needed it more than ever. It shouldn't be hard to find the good in that.

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I'm guessing that SDS's point is that the portion right before what he bolded from Callaway's post, being the "best human being possible" makes the rest redundant.  You take care of that part, you've already got everything covered.

But anyway, having not set foot in that stadium in a very long time and having lost interest in the team, I've always been out of the loop on this one.  How did he get to that iconic fan status (if such a thing really exists) that he has had in recent years?

Edited by shrader

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1 minute ago, darksabre said:

Because children need to understand that being a sports fan is the best way to have your debilitating illness used as a promotional tool by people and organizations seeking to elevate their public standing. 

I'm typically not a cynical person, but this is a 50-pointer.

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2 minutes ago, LTS said:

Corrupted in less than a page... sad.

I'm not a Bills fan any longer.  I'm not even a football fan.  The dude certainly put his heart and passion into the team and the sport.  He's too damn young (everyone is, every time). We should all be so lucky to find something we can be that passionate about in life. 

When I see this story (and have seen the past updates) I simply look at it as a team and a fan coming together when the fan needed it more than ever. It shouldn't be hard to find the good in that.

 

2 minutes ago, shrader said:

I'm guessing that SDS's point is that the portion right before what he bolded from Callaway's post, being the "best human being possible" makes the rest redundant.  You take care of that part, you've already got everything covered.

But anyway, having not set foot in that stadium in a very long time and having lost interest in the team, I've always been out of the loop on this one.  How did he get to that iconic fan status (if such a thing really exists) that he has had in recent years?

I think this whole thing started out innocently enough. But it didn't take long for it to devolve into a situation where everyone apparently knew this guy and was his best friend.

I don't think he ever asked for all of this attention. I don't fault him at all.

Some here might think I'm being overly cynical, but Buffalo is a town that loves to congratulate itself every chance it gets, and this has been no different.

It stopped being about him a while ago. And I expect it will still be a while before people (and the Bills) have wrung all they can out of him.

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8 minutes ago, darksabre said:

 

I think this whole thing started out innocently enough. But it didn't take long for it to devolve into a situation where everyone apparently knew this guy and was his best friend.

I don't think he ever asked for all of this attention. I don't fault him at all.

Some here might think I'm being overly cynical, but Buffalo is a town that loves to congratulate itself every chance it gets, and this has been no different.

It stopped being about him a while ago. And I expect it will still be a while before people (and the Bills) have wrung all they can out of him.

If that were true would it even matter? I'm sure his family and he appreciated it, and probably benefited from it, and that's enough

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16 minutes ago, LTS said:

Corrupted in less than a page... sad.

I'm not a Bills fan any longer.  I'm not even a football fan.  The dude certainly put his heart and passion into the team and the sport.  He's too damn young (everyone is, every time). We should all be so lucky to find something we can be that passionate about in life. 

When I see this story (and have seen the past updates) I simply look at it as a team and a fan coming together when the fan needed it more than ever. It shouldn't be hard to find the good in that.

Here is a 20-page topic if you are interested:

https://www.twobillsdrive.com/community/topic/215268-panchobilla-enters-hospice-has-now-passed-away

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Ezra was a kid in El Paso when he decided he wanted to root for an NFL team.  He decided he wanted to follow a team with red, white and blue colors to show his loyalty to his country; it came down to New England and Buffalo.  Buffalo had a better team at the time so he picked the Bills.  He was also an avid San Antonio Spurs fan and had a similar selection of attire when going to Spurs games.

9 minutes ago, darksabre said:

And I expect it will still be a while before people (and the Bills) have wrung all they can out of him. 

I say good.  He loved the Bills.  One of the biggest thrills of his life was calling Harrison Phillips's name in the draft.  If the Bills can wring some inspiration from his battle with cancer and win, he would have loved it.  He wasn't from Buffalo, but he was one of us.

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6 minutes ago, WildCard said:

Guaranteed dumpster fire

It depends if you consider putting his name permanently on the Wall of Fame a dumpster fire. Other than that it is has been respectful.

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He seemed like a great guy. ***** cancer. I like that he hoped for in lieu of flowers, people would donate backpacks full of school supplies. He had fame thrust upon him and he only used it for good. I will happily donate to a fund or charity in his name. Find the good in it, for there is little good in illness.

 

But i won’t deny the media circus surrounding him has felt ghoulish and unsettling at times. You can’t and shouldn’t brand suffering, use it as glue. But I guess that’s the risk any public tragic story will have. There were just a lot of times it felt exploitative to me- fine line between inspiring and exploitative.

 

I hope the media leaves his family alone. The last few days of people updating every gory detail of his days felt wrong. It’ll be hard to find peace with reporters in their faces. 

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1 hour ago, josie said:

I hope the media leaves his family alone. The last few days of people updating every gory detail of his days felt wrong. It’ll be hard to find peace with reporters in their faces. 

Veronica was providing updates on Ezra's FB page.  She knew people cared about Ezra, not just as Pancho Billa, but as Ezra Castro the person.  I don't know that anyone was really getting up in her face.

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It's awful he passed away, especially when considering he was only 3 years older than I am...really puts things in perspective.

However, I feel bad for the thousands of other Bills/Sabres fans who are sick with cancer and never even get a Pegula/Beane/Botterill signed card in the mail.


(I still find it odd that grown men dress up for sports games not played on Halloween...why don't the Sabres have any of these characters?)

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3 hours ago, SDS said:

Why is being the best X fan possible important to a child?

Because it is odd. Everyone is different, but it is hard to imagine why this would be considered important enough to sit your kid down for life lesson time.

Its a heckuv a feel good but sad story, even if Bills are exploiting it a bit and with all the negativity out there right now, more stories like this are needed.  I showed my 14 year old and his response was seems like a lot of good people are dying lately but thanks for the video.  He said dont worry Dad you wont die from your 's because you are such an a.. then gave me a hug and told me he loved me.  Maybe because I was recently diagnosed it hits home...

Edited by North Buffalo
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