This past November, one of the city’s biggest Buffalo Bills super fans, Ezra Castro aka Pancho Billa, was inaugurated into the Buffalo Fan Wall of Fame at the Buffalo Hall of Fame Experience. That was a very happy time for the diehard Buffalo football fan – the tribute echoed throughout the region, resonating with anyone who had ever witnessed Pancho Billa at a Bills game.
Earlier this month, Pancho Billa lost his fight with cancer, and Buffalo lost one of its own. Now, a local ketchup company – Nickel City Ketchup – is “keeping Pancho’s spirit alive”, by contributing a portion of its proceeds to the GoFundMe campaign – Pancho Power. The funds raised via the crowdfunding site are being directed to Pancho’s family.
“Ezra was loved by all that he met, and he is an inspiration that shows what family and community is all about. Pancho Billa loved our team, and our team and community, beyond Bills fans everywhere, loves him,” said Tim Ingle, spokesperson for Nickel City Ketchup, who first met Pancho Billa at a pre-game tailgate prior to the Bills Monday night football game in Seattle on November 8, 2016.
“He was like a super-hero when he tailgated with hundreds of #BillsMafia in Indianapolis last October at a tailgate that was hosted by Nickel City Ketchup. Captain Buffalo, Pinto Ron, Joanie and the crew were all on hand, where it was so evident the mutual respect that everyone had with Ezra and the inspirational buzz that he created regardless of team colors. It has been amazing to see how his story has traveled, and the power of people and the community to be united on common principles, including family and faith. #BillsMafia is a part of his family, and his legacy will live forever. Nickel City Ketchup wants to do its part, even if it is a small part in celebrating Ezra’s inspiration and legacy by contributing to the GoFundMe campaign in Pancho’s name for his family,” Ingle said.
Ingle, who grew up in Orchard Park, not only recognizes Ezra’s legacy that was tied to his passion for the Bills, he also commends his life’s selfless work when it came to supporting myriad causes, including Fans Against Child Abuse, Fans Against Violence, and NFL and MLB Go Gold for Kids Cancer.
“It is the hard-nosed work ethic, sense of community and loyalty that I always admired in Western New York. Pancho Billa (former President of the DFW Chapter of the Buffalo Bills Backers and ultimate Bills fan in Pro Football’s Ultimate Fan Association) represents our spirit and passion, and we can continue to celebrate him going forward,” Ingle said.
Nickel City Ketchup is distributed by Buffalo’s very own Latina Foods, US Foods Buffalo, and G&C Foods. To purchase Nickel City Ketchup online, visit buyredgoldnow.com/nickel-city.