"Before I joined LAFF, I remember reading an article about Anthony, and was moved to tears because I knew what it felt like to face some of the adversities he went through and the far reaching search for release, self discovery, and people to confide in. I never met him, but I was inspired by his courage and strength, and reminded how important gay leagues like LAFF is to me and how its continued to shape my life through sports and the friends I’ve met along the way.
"The first day Anthony and Cody showed up at Penmar Park. We were blown away by his story and his courage….and were so impressed they chose to drive such a distance to play with us! I do not recall how they found out about us.
He had a lovely presence about him…understated and confident at the same time. Exceedingly mature for his age. Skilled player and excellent teammate with a quiet dignity about him.
I have in my mind a picture of him and Cody…maybe it was before or after a game, maybe during a break….Cody was sitting up, and Anthony was laying down with head and shoulders were leaning into Cody’s body as Cody held him and stroked his hair. There he was, in his lover’s arms, in a public park on a beautiful day, surrounded by like minded individuals – sport-wise and sexual orientation-wise – he looked completely at peace and safe in that moment. It must have been a far cry from his daily existence out in the hostile IE."
“Only the good die young”
The Anthony Castro Cup is dedicated to the memory of Michael Anthony Castro (1987-2007), and awarded, each season to the winning team of LA Flag Football’s league playoffs. The award is a reflection of a teams athleticism, courage, strength, teamwork, and unity, all of which exemplified the life of Anthony.
Anthony Castro joined LA Flag Football in 2005 and played receiver and defensive back for the league and was a part of the Gay Games 2006, gold medal, LA Motion team. Castro lived in Banning, California and was on the football, swim, and wrestling team, leadership and yearbook staff at his high school.
“Hi, I’m Anthony. I live in Banning, California. I am a gay athlete and still in high school. … With no other gay jocks, I feel like I am the only one and it sucks cause I don’t know any other guys that are gay and like me. I play football, basketball, track, cheerleading and swim. I have been playing football since I was five. I am the tight end for my high school, free safety and kickoff and punt returner. I don’t know why I told you this but there you go. LOL. You guys are the closest to me and I figured if I was going to be moving down there, I should find out about things that are going on what are the age limits that you guys need to join” (as cited in Buzinski, Outsports 2007).
Outsports – Jim Buzinski ESPN – LZ Granderson LA Times – David Wharton
Fresno State – Alumni Association