Southwest Athletic Complex to be renamed in honor of Nino Cantu

Two and a half years after the untimely death of Southwest Athletic Complex grounds/event manager Nino Cantu, a long-sought tribute is close to reality. At last night’s Seattle School Board meeting, a proposal to rename SWAC in his honor was formally introduced. The board heard from Denny International Middle School principal Jeff Clark and Mr. Cantu’s longtime friend, Denny/Sealth kitchen and loading-dock manager Doree Fazio-Young (the video below should start at the beginning of the meeting presentation, but if not, it’s 4 hours, 21 minutes, 32 seconds in):

As she had during a tribute to Mr. Cantu shortly after his death in October 2018, Fazio-Young spoke of not only his achievements but also his warmth – “he was everybody’s best friend.” Here’s the agenda document with background on the proposal, which was circulated among the Denny IMS and Chief Sealth IHS communities last fall:

After last night’s introduction, the next step is for formal School Board approval April 7th. Then, a sign for the Nino Cantu Southwest Athletic Complex will be created and installed, and a community celebration will be planned for halftime at a Chief Sealth football game in the fall.

5 Replies to "Southwest Athletic Complex to be renamed in honor of Nino Cantu"

  • DAFFY March 25, 2021 (11:31 am)

    I worked with Nino for years.  What a wonderful tribute!

  • Sky March 25, 2021 (2:03 pm)

    While I didn’t know him well, I met Nino many times when I was a student at Denny. He was a very kind man, and took great pride in the work he did! This is a great tribute it him and his memory!!

  • MercyMoi March 25, 2021 (5:36 pm)

    I’m in support of this tribute! I didn’t know Mr Cantu myself but I agree with the Board members who said that these are the people whose names need to be on our buildings and facilities. Thank you Mr Clark and Ms Doree for your strong presentations! This is how change happens.

  • Eric March 27, 2021 (12:42 pm)

    I coached and administered a youth sports program at SWAC.  Anyone who had any business there was better for knowing Nino.  He was the kind of man who never met a stranger.

  • Dana Dukes April 11, 2021 (12:34 am)

    Nino was bigger than life.  Our lives were far richer for the years he spent on this earth. What a character!!!

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