Christmas has always been a much-celebrated event in the Castle family. As a kid growing up, Dan Castle was one of my first buddies, and through the years I witnessed how the effect of the approaching Christmas Holiday would ignite a fever that spread through the Castle clan.

An entire Saturday would be devoted to making Christmas candy, with brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, and scads of cousins taking part. The modest little home, on Rosemont Street in Comstock Township, Michigan, would be elbow to elbow, with various stages of the production of a variety of favorite Christmas treats.

It was only inevitable that the Castle Clan Christmas fervor was passed on to Dan Castle's young nephew David Castle, who inherited the skill of outdoor Christmas displays. 

David grew up on Battle Creek Street, in Galesburg, Michigan. His family's home had a small tree that had been planted just left of the front porch, and young Dave decided to adopt that tree and each Christmas, create a tree that glistened with small white lights. At least, that’s the way I remember it.

Each year, as the tree grew, more and more lights were added. He eventually added a small manger, which he built, complete with Joseph, Mary, and the Baby Jesus.

Eventually, Dave graduated from Galesburg-Augusta Schools and headed for Florida. My son married Dave’s sister Emily, and they became the owners of the home. I remember, one summer, standing under the branches of the now large tree, and seeing the old strands of lights that had long lost their glow, becoming just memories of Christmas past. And I would remember David. 

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Stories of Dave creating impressive Christmas light displays at his home in Florida would reach his family and friends in Michigan, and with the arrival of Facebook and YouTube, his displays were available for viewing. And they were outstanding.

His home and property had become a computerized Christmas extravaganza, and eventually, ABC Television took note. Dave’s display was selected as one of the competitors in season 10 of "The Great Christmas Light Fight". His display was titled “Techie In The Front and Tacky In The Back”, featuring lights not only in front of his family's home but also in the back.

It was wall-to-wall lights and displays on his patch of Palm City, Florida. And to top things off, he ended up winning episode 4 and receiving $50,000 for his efforts and a snazzy trophy for the mantle. And I wouldn't be surprised if a remnant of the small white Christmas tree lights still clings to the branches of Dave's first Christmas display efforts, on Battle Creek Street.

Check out the ABC television YouTube Video and gallery photos! 

David Castle's Winning Display on The Great Christmas Light Fight