World bids farewell to ‘O Rei’ of fútbol


Agência Brasil via Wikimedia Commons

Pele, a world-renown legend in the game of fútbol, died in December, leaving behind decades worth of highlight reels and legions of fans.

Daniella Lainez ’26, Staff Reporter

On Dec. 29, 2022 football legend, Pele, died. 

He was born on Oct. 23, 1940, and while growing up in poverty, he first learned the game of football from his father, playing with a sock stuffed with newspaper tied to a string, or a grapefruit. 

Later, at the age of 15, he played for Santos, and at 16 he began to play for the national team. Playing forward, Pele had led Brazil to three FIFA World Cups, in 1958, 1962, and 1970. He won 26 trophies from playing for club teams and for Brazil. 

Pele has impacted my life by setting a high example of what hard work means to me.

— Soffi Para-Bautista ’26

Armando Castillo, World Languages Department Chair, said he was a “kid from the slums of Brazil with nothing. Through dedication and hard work, he was able to elevate himself and the sport of football while being humble and living a calm life.” 

Religion teacher and sports fan Josuha Keeney, said what fans can take away from Pele is that, “hard work, determination are key for success. How to persevere through difficult times even in adversity, do not give up and use some of the skills and talents God has given you to achieve greatness.”  

Soffi Para-Bautista ’26 stated, “Pele has impacted my life by setting a high example of what hard work means to me.” 

Pele is a legend in the sport of football by not only spreading the popularity of the sport in Brazil, but all over the world. He set a standard of what the outcome of hard work and determination can look like, and will forever be the face of a sport known for perseverance and patience culminating in reaching goals.