Fino Garcia, FC Dallas Premier

$40,225 of $100,000 goal

Raised by 405 people in 59 months
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Delfino "Fino" Garcia, of FC Dallas' Premier 98s, was a gifted and tremendously talented young man. His passion for the game of soccer was evident in his play on the pitch. His style was nothing less than a graceful mastery of domination on offense. The young men who shared the field with him were more like true brothers than teammates. After a match, they often said "Fino had my back."

Well known and respected in our North Texas soccer community, Fino Garcia has a lengthy list of accomplishments, including playing for his current team, FC Dallas' Premier 98s, as well as FC Dallas' Pre-Academy from 2010-2014 and FC Dallas' Development Academy. Fino was part of a three-peat Championship win at North Texas' 2014 State Cup, wins at the 2013 Region III Championship and play at the 2013 National Championship in addition to another visit to this year's 2014 Regional Championship and the Dallas Cup Finals. He was also named ESPN's 2012 Copa Most Valuable Player.

On Sunday, August 24, 2014, while at home, Fino suffered a ruptured blood vessel in the brain, depleting his brain of oxygen, leaving him with no brain activity and unable to breathe on his own. He was placed on life-support at Children's Hospital of Dallas. After extensive testing, doctors determined the condition was present since birth and could not have been prevented. No  treatment was possible. Fino passed peacefully on Thursday, August 28, 2014. 

The sudden and tragic loss of this young man has been felt by so many. Family, friends, former and current teammates and coaches, Fino touched all of our lives. Out of this great heartache, Fino still finds a way to bless others. It was his wish to be an organ donor. In this way, Fino's spirit will live on.

Please consider donating to support the Garcia family. All donations will go toward Fino's medical expenses and related costs. Please share this link with others to increase the opportunity for others to give their support.

Our deepest thanks to everyone for your amazing generosity and continued thoughts and prayers. Our soccer community is rallying  for support. This time Fino, we have your back.  

The FC Dallas Premier 98s Family
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A note from Judy, a family friend:

Within 5 minutes of meeting Fino’s Mom, Veronica, I knew three things: 1. She loved her children and would do anything for them 2. She loved Jesus 3. She and I would become good friends

Veronica would often tell me stories of Fino’s extroverted personality and his ability to make friends with everyone. She would often recite the number of friends and soccer players she had in her house the night before. I remember telling her that it was a blessing, because she and Fino would never be alone in life. I did not expect that statement to become so relevant, so soon.

From the Garcia Family:

Friends, Family, Teammates and Supporters:

With our deepest gratitude, we thank you for everything you have done to help support our family during this difficult time. It is hard to list every single act of kindness by name.

You were there for us during our most difficult time when Fino was in the hospital. You held his hand and spoke to him. You prayed for him. You hugged our family. You researched and talked to the Dr’s to understand about his condition. You brought us food and supplies. You wept with us and for us. You lifted him up in your prayers and churches across the country. You carried us when we could not walk. You did things for us that we could not think to do because we were so focused on getting our son, our brother to wake up.

You were there for us afterwards, and still are. The kind words, the support, prayers, donations, food, hugs, the notes in the guestbook, gravesite visits and your compassion will never be forgotten. At a recent FC Dallas game, there was a moment of silence in his honor. There were banners flying around the stadium to celebrate our son and brother. The Fino Garcia Memorial Tournament was held on Saturday October 11, 2014 at Dallas Soccer League. Chick-fil-a supported us with a Spirit Week for Fino. There have been so many people who have banded together to make us feel cared for. It brings tears to our eyes and joy to our heart to know Fino touched so many lives and is loved by so many.

Because of YOU we have never felt alone and never will.

With Sincere Gratitude,

The Garcia Family

This site on behalf of the Garcia Family will close soon. My personal thanks to all who took time to share and post here in loving memory of Fino.
God Bless, Inga Van Wagoner
FC Dallas 98s
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Thursday September 11, 2014

Today FC Dallas and club president Dan Hunt presented the Garcia family with a custom blue hoops jersey. Autographed by the pro team players, the jersey is complete with Fino's name and number 28 on the back.

At the club's invitation, Mom Veronica, dad Delfino, brother Eric and sister Clarissa were all present at a closed team training session this morning. Also present were Dan Hunt and FC Dallas coaches, some who have trained Fino in past years and know the family personally. This Saturday's match up between FC Dallas and the Vancouver Whitecaps will feature a moment of silence in Fino's honor.

Earlier this week, MLS team Chicago Fire posted their condolences and donation to this page. Scroll below to read their message of support. Please continue to forward and share Fino's story. The gracious support and heartfelt prayers received have been a true comfort to the Garcias. On their behalf, I give my deepest gratitude.
Thank you, Inga Van Wagoner, FC Dallas 98s
FC Dallas honors Fino with custom jersey
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Today would have been Fino's 17th birthday.

He is present in our thoughts and in our hearts. And even though the path to healing is long, we know he is with us every step.

This was posted recently in memory of Fino:

"What moves through us is a silence, a quiet sadness, a longing for one more day, one more word, one more touch, we may not understand why you left this earth so soon, or why you left before we were ready to say good-bye, but little by little, we begin to remember not just that you died, but that you lived. And that your life gave us memories too beautiful to forget."
- Author Unknown

I continue to thank every person and family and team that has supported the Garcia family. Your generosity and kind words and prayers truly are a comfort.

Happy Birthday Fino, you are with us always.

Inga Van Wagoner, FC Dallas 98s
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Today we came together to celebrate Fino's life before he was laid to rest. Services began at 10am at St. Lukes Catholic Church in Irving, TX. Fino's teammates escorted the casket into the church followed by his family. A loving eulogy (attached below) was created and read in English by Inga Van Wagoner, an FC Dallas 98s parent and in Spanish by FC Dallas Coach Jesse Suarez. At the closing of the ceremony, the players again escorted the casket out in preparation for the procession. Fino was laid to rest at Grand Prairie Memorial Gardens, following a release of white balloons by family, teammates and friends.

Veronica and Delfino Garcia and family send their deepest gratitude for all of your prayers, condolences and donations. They are quite simply at a loss for words to express the magnitude of their appreciation. I ask that you continue to remember them in your daily blessings as they adjust to their loss. The many sentiments from everyone on this support page will be printed, bound and given to them so that they can take comfort in your words and wishes for healing.

This page will remain open at the request of many who have asked if they may still post donations. Thank you for your generosity, please feel free to continue to share this link in Fino's memory. ~Inga

Delfino "Fino" Garcia ~ Eulogy

It does not matter the size of the stone that you toss into the water.
What matters are how far the ripples will reach.

Delfino "Fino" Garcia, was born September 8, 1997 in Chicago to parents Veronica and Delfino. He has one brother Erick and one sister Clarissa and a loving family of relatives and friends who are here today to celebrate his life.

Fino’s passion for the game of soccer started early at age 4, playing for his first team, the Tecos. When Fino was 8, the family moved to Grand Prairie, Texas and his soccer story grew. His next team was the Pumas, then Andromeda, and finally FC Dallas. Many of you here today were his teammate or one of his coaches: Francisco Molina, Gabby Gentile, Josema Bazan, Jesse Suarez and Scott Dymond. Whether you played with him or against him, soccer was a special experience with Fino in the game. A gifted and tremendously talented player, he possessed a quiet strength and showed graceful skill on the pitch. Ask any of the young men who shared the field with him on his current team, FC Dallas 98s—they will tell you they were more like brothers than teammates. After a match, they often said "Fino had my back."

Fino was well-known and respected in our North Texas soccer community, and had a lengthy list of accomplishments, including playing for FC Dallas' Pre-Academy and FC Dallas' Development Academy. He was named ESPN's 2012 Copa Most Valuable Player, travelling with the 98s to the ESPN Sports Complex at Walt Disney World, Florida. Some of us remember that was his very first time to travel by plane! Fino was part of FC Dallas wins at the 2013 Region III Championship and play at the 2013 National Championship, a Three-peat Championship win at North Texas' 2014 State Cup, and another visit to this year's 2014 Regional Championship and Dallas Cup Finals.

But Fino was more than a gifted soccer player. Much more. It has been said, “Family is not Everything. It is the Only thing” and Fino placed his family above all else. To his father Delfino, he was “Picitos de Oro—little pieces of gold.” Fino would choose to leave early from a friend’s just to be sure his mom Veronica was not alone or that she got home safely. His sister Clarissa was on the sidelines the Sunday morning of Fino’s last game. He hugged her afterwards. He held onto her for just a moment longer than usual. He told his sister he loved her. She said he didn’t normally do that.

It does not matter the size of the stone that you toss into the water.
What matters are how far the ripples will reach.

There have been literally hundreds of posts to the website online honoring Fino. Some of the posts read:

Playing with and against him was truly a blessing, and always drove me to be at my best, his smile and attitude taught me to love life to the fullest and never take anything for granted.

Having watched Fino play when he was younger, I knew he was going to be an amazing soccer player. He loved to play. I remember how happy he was playing with his friends, always smiling. Such a wonderful person!

Fino was a student of mine from my first year of teaching…He was a great kid and will never be forgotten.

We remember him always happy, having a great heart caring for animals and insects, one being his scorpion and going to get crickets to feed it!

Finito was a remarkable young man that was loved by our entire family. Fino leaves us but his smile and spirit will remain forever.

I'm sure he's in heaven playing among some of the greatest to ever play the game!

I thought I could be a mentor to him. Turns out, he was mentoring me.

You always saw the good things in life and made me see them too, I'm so blessed to have had you in my life and to have known you.

It was an honor to have played with Fino…my friend, he will be missed.

And we all have endless funny stories! On our team, we always asked Fino to say his teammate’s last name “Van Wagoner.” He couldn’t pronounce it! But he could always make us laugh trying!

It does not matter the size of the stone that you toss into the water.
What matters are how far the ripples will reach.

Six. That’s the number of lives Fino saved because he chose to be an organ donor. His family knew this was his wish. And they honored it.
His heart was given to a teenager Fino’s age.
His liver went to a young child.
His right kidney to a younger teen.
His left kidney to another child.
His pancreas to a 50 year old woman.
His lungs to a 60 year old man. 

Even in our sorrow, Fino helps us see joy in giving. He gave the greatest gift of all--Life. And so, he lives on.

Our loss was felt by many more than we have gathered here today. Support and prayers have come from, Sacramento Republic FC, LA Galaxy, Chicago Fire, Toronto FC and New England Revolution FC and of course, FC Dallas, Classic League and Regional Premier League.

It does not matter the size of the stone that you toss into the water.
What matters are how far the ripples will reach.

All of us have been blessed to know Fino. To love him, to play alongside him, to coach him. All of us have been blessed to share joy and sorrow with him, wins and losses with him. You see, Fino is that stone, creating ripples that have reached all of us. Fino left a beautiful mark on the lives of the people he knew. He showed us how to give and live selflessly. He is that stone. He created a ripple effect. We can all learn from Fino—To bless our family. To cherish our friendships. To create our own ripple effect. To give and to live for others. I cannot think of a better way to honor Fino and to say, “We have your back.”

God Bless. Inga VanWagoner
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$40,225 of $100,000 goal

Raised by 405 people in 59 months
No Longer Accepting Donations
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Created August 28, 2014
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The Casale Family
57 months ago
Robert Xu
57 months ago

RIP, May God's love and peace go to his family!

Gomez 02 Boys Red FCD
58 months ago
Renee Robbins
58 months ago

This donation is on behalf of the FC Dallas 05B J. Lopez Copa team. Our sincerest condolences to the family.

Mason Dierkes
58 months ago
Bliss McDermott
58 months ago (Monthly Donation)
Nick Legamaro
58 months ago

God Bless!

Matt Mazur
58 months ago

Rest in peace #28 - proud to wear the FCD badge with you.

Alberto & Adriana Ramos
58 months ago (Monthly Donation)
Tom Supan
58 months ago

Inga- so happy to help!

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