Businesses are honoring Pancho Billa by collecting new backpacks for students in need. It was the last wish of the bills superfan who died from cancer this week.
After Bills superfan Ezra Castro, a.k.a. ‘Pancho Billa,’ showed so much love to a city he didn’t call home, businesses across western New York are showing their love for him.
“It’s just heartwarming that this guy from Texas was so in love with the Buffalo Bills as we are and it’s just great to see something like this come together,” said Jeff Jacobbi, owner of JJ’s Casa Di Pizza.
At JJs Casa Di Pizza, the owner is offering a free pizza in honor of Pancho. He says he’s already called in extra staff to help.
“A free large pizza for anybody that donates a new backpack with school supplies in it as per his wishes,” said Jacobbi.
Jeff Jacobbi says he was inspired after hearing people donate money to The Teacher’s Desk in Buffalo, but this is another effort in addition to that.
Jacobbi says he’s teamed up with other businesses including Buffalo Station House and Eve’s Ale House for ‘Backpacks for Pancho.’ They’re asking people to donate backpacks filled with school supplies and drop them off at their businesses. Jacobbi says he hopes this outpouring of support gives Pancho’s family some comfort.
“I’m hoping it eases the pain a little in just letting him know how much in Buffalo we loved him and thought he was a great guy,” said Jacobbi.
Jacobbi says he’s already received dozens of calls about donations at his restaurant alone. For many people, it’s not surprising in the city of good neighbors.
“It speaks to Buffalo and how we are as a community and Bills fans alike, it’s Buffalo, it’s what we are it’s what we do,” said Micah Lamarti, general manager of JJ’s Casa Di Pizza.
JJ’s Casa Di Pizza is offering their pizza deal until Tuesday. Studio Hue is also hosting a backpack and schol supply drive next week.
For more information, click here.