“It was one of the most significant days in my life,” she says, explaining that when the ceremony started, she saw everything she went through to get to that point flashing in front of her.
That was four years ago but she still tears up remembering it now.
“You think of everything you gave up,” says Castro, who had to give up citizenship in her home country when she became a U.S. citizen.
Castro now lives in Los Angeles but her whole family is still in the Dominican Republic.
A middle child, Castro has three brothers and is part of a Dominican Republic military family. They moved around a lot when she was a child, including time in the U.S. when her father was training at Montgomery Air Force Base in Alabama and working at the Dominican Republic Embassy in Washington, D.C. Growing up, Castro, now an actress and singer, performed in commercials and on the stage and screen.
Though Spanish is her first language, she also speaks English, French, Portuguese and a little Arabic. She’s trained in Brazilian martial arts, gymnastics, trapeze and dance.
When her movie “Someday” debuts at the Dominican Film Festival in New York City this July, Castro will be on a panel of female filmmakers.
“I love it because it’s giving us a voice,” she says. “We get to see our side of the story.”
“Who I am”
Castro’s skin is very fair and she doesn’t tan. People are often surprised she’s Hispanic. Her nicknames include Snow White, “The Girl from the Snow” and “Porcelain.”
“We all come in different shapes, size, colors,” she says. “That doesn’t make one more Hispanic or Latino than the other.”
Her heritage is always close by. When she travels, Castro always carries two things with her: an amber necklace from her mother and a Greca coffee pot so she can make her favorite Dominican Republic brew.
She’s proud of her Latin roots and says Hispanic Heritage Month is more relevant than ever.
“It’s who I am,” Castro says, concluding, “It’s my origin, my beginning, my middle and my end.”
Kristen Castillo, [email protected]