VIDEO: ‘This one’s for Nino.’ Halftime tribute to Nino Cantu, ‘the heart and soul’ of Southwest Athletic Complex

“This one’s for Nino.” Chief Sealth International High School football players dedicated last night’s game to Nino Cantu, the longtime grounds manager at their home field, Southwest Athletic Complex. Mr. Cantu died suddenly a week earlier. His friend Doree Fazio-Young led the halftime tribute:

The team kept the ovation going, chanting Nino’s name, and went on to win the game, 42-37, over Roosevelt. Seattle Public Schools paid tribute to Mr. Cantu in this statement:

We are deeply saddened by the loss of a beloved staff member, Nino Cantu. Nino passed away on the night of October 11. He had been a valued SPS colleague for 18 years and was the heart and soul of the Southwest Sports Complex. His dedication to student athletes in Seattle and beyond showed every day in the pride he took in his facility as well as the enthusiasm he brought to every event at his complex. Everyone that knew Nino was touched by his energy and enthusiasm for life. His bombastic style and huge grin would greet old friends and new. He was one of a kind and his passion for life never failed to lift the spirits of those around him. You could not speak with Nino and not end up with a smile on your face. His passing has deeply affected our community. We are grateful that his legacy and leadership will live on for many years to come.

Mr. Cantu was just 51 years old.

4 Replies to "VIDEO: 'This one's for Nino.' Halftime tribute to Nino Cantu, 'the heart and soul' of Southwest Athletic Complex"

  • JRU October 20, 2018 (9:13 am)

    So true about Nino… I coach a couple different sports and Nino was always so helpful as a groundskeeper and always a great guy to talk to. Hey CS, thanks for honoring him this way. I’m sure he’s extremely proud of the success you’ve had this year!

  • Doree Fazio-Young October 20, 2018 (11:15 am)

    Once again WSB you knocked it out of the park!! The coverage of this event and all of your sports coverage on Friday nights is superb!! Thank u for being there for our kids but as u are for all the kids and for me. Love u guys

    • Sandal45 October 20, 2018 (12:33 pm)

      Doree, I never met Nino & I could feel his awesome presence through your words and smile.

      YOU are still an amazing woman!

      ❤️ Jacobs’s mom

  • Karen October 22, 2018 (7:29 am)

    Hi Doree, I never had the pleasure of meeting Nino but I felt like I knew him from the words that you spoke. He couldn’t have been honored in a more compassionate way,

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