Don “Capi” Correa

Don Capi Correa

By Karla Ortiz

José María Correa Tellez, better known as Don “Capi” Correa, has dedicated his life to sports. Even now he still attends zumba classes to encourage and greet people living in various communities. This man has been a great promoter of sports throughout his life and that is what he will continue to do as long as “God allows it.” His voice is still recognized by sports lovers because, even at the age of 92, he has a radio program on XESQ on which he gives exclusive information about sports and comments on the results of international, national, and local soccer, always trying to keep San Miguel fans informed.

He has been interviewed many times, and he has so much energy that he has never said no to anyone. Students, newspapers, and radio stations have all heard his story, the same story that we are bringing to you today in Atención.

Don Capi remembers very well the dates and names of the people with whom he worked. He says that in 1938 he was attending the Santo Domingo school, now Las Casas, where he played baseball with his friends on internal teams and against external teams. One of the first games he played were in honor of his teacher, Maria Paulina Gaudin, in the baseball fields that were behind what is now the Angela Peralta Theater. “At that time more people than cars were in the streets,” said Don “Capi.” During that game he and his friends became so enthusiastic about the sport that they continued playing it.

After some time, they became interested in soccer, and in 1943 they already had three teams: the Aurora team (the oldest), Santo Domingo, and San Rafael. There weren’t many of them, but they had fun playing soccer.

People know Don “Capi” as an honest, kind person with a good attitude. He is recognized as one of the forces behind the creation of the Ignacio Allende League. He doesn’t boast, but he remembers perfectly the names of the people who contributed to the sport of soccer: David Pérez, David Vega, José Muñoz, Don Sabino, and Don “Capi” were the ones who started this league. In the beginning it was given the name of Ignacio Allende Independent League and was later renamed “Seguro Social” because of the support they received from Dr. Valtierra. After the Doctor’s death, they decided to go back to the name of Ignacio Allende League.

Don “Capi” says that the league began with 14 or 15 teams, and that he is proud to say that there are 50 teams today. He boasts that he has been manager of the three leagues in San Miguel: the Ignacio Allende League, the Veterans League, and the Municipal League.

During the administration of former Mayor Luis Alberto Villarreal, it was decided to honor “Capi” by naming the municipal stadium after him. At first the idea was to name the municipal fields after him. “They spent 3 months deliberating, and I didn’t remember all of it, but in the end they decided to name the stadium after me,” he commented. Don “Capi” is very pleased and proud that his name has made the rounds across the republic because his name appears in news about the teams.

In 1943, the León team was formed. Don “Capi” has been known as a “panza verde (person who is fan of León’s soccer team) at heart, and he remembers anecdotes about when he watched them play. One of the most dramatic events was when a story came out of the players’ locker room in 1992 and all the players from Puebla and León were interviewed. The story was that although it breaks his heart, sometimes he changes the TV channel so that he won’t see how badly they are playing. “I can’t stand that many disappointments,” he commented in disgust.

 

He remembers many important achievements and some that have remained in his memory forever. One important memory is when five teams were playing for the San Miguel championship. It resonates in his head that he scored the only goal of his life in that game, but it was the most important one because that goal meant winning the championship. “I remember my teammates and even all of my opponents with a lot of affection.”

Another very important memory was the sharing of the Aurora team’s equipment with the Zone Centro de León team, which assured the birth of the second division.

Reaching 92 years of age has been another achievement, and he thanks God for giving him the good fortune to continue supporting his greatest love, sports. He continues to instill the benefits of physical activity in people. He boasts that he has never been violent and that he has gone more than 70 years without drinking one beer. That is not surprising because he has tasted alcohol only three times in his lifetime, and that was not by his own choice.

“I want to tell young Sanmiguelenses to forget about bad habits and to remember that sports contributes to a healthy and correct life. The worst adversary of bad habits is sports. I am very grateful to all the people who supported me. It is so great that I am well received everywhere and cars stop to let me pass. I have nothing to thank them with, but the one up there will keep them in mind,” concluded Don “Capi” Correa.

 

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