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Nomads: Face to Face A1C Alejandro Castillo

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Emily Smallwood
  • 33rd Fighter Wing

“My childhood was a little tough. I grew up with barely anybody. My parents had hardships and my mom had to pay the mortgage. Since I was in 7th grade, all my friends were into sports and I wanted to join but my parents couldn’t afford for me to play. Luckily, my friend’s mom paid for me to join the team and that eventually grew into playing in high school.”

Airman 1st Class Alejandro Castillo, 33rd Maintenance Squadron aerospace ground equipment journeyman, excelled through high school earning most valuable player titles during his sophomore through senior year. Eventually, he was scouted by an FC Dallas team and began rising through the program. He recently began coaching a soccer team for girls under the age of eight in the local area.

“This is actually my first time coaching since I PCS’d here in July. I wanted to coach U-8 boys because I didn’t think I was going to be able to connect with girls. (I was) a boy so I understand boys better. Eventually, I got to bond more with the girls and that impacted me a lot. I was able to help them grow. The parents saw that I was doing a good job with them and how much I meant to them.”

While coaching the fundamentals of soccer, Castillo was also able to teach the girls life lessons. From his coaching experience, he was learning lessons that would impact his own career.

“My goal is to develop their soccer skills and advance with age but also teach them life lessons. I was late a few times to practice and I felt bad because I felt like I let them down and we had less time. So I started going 10-15 minutes earlier when I wanted to do a certain drill, l would prepare for it. Same thing with work. It motivated me to come 15 minutes or 30 minutes early. It got me more prepared for the rest of the day so I wouldn’t have to rush to do things.”