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Fresno State Police Department honors former police chief with blood drive

Central+California+Blood+Center+hosts+a+blood+drive+at+Fresno+State+on+Nov.+14-16.+The+blood+drive+was+in+memory+of+David+Huerta%2C+Fresno+States+former+police+chief.
Jacqueline Carrillo/The Collegian
Central California Blood Center hosts a blood drive at Fresno State on Nov. 14-16. The blood drive was in memory of David Huerta, Fresno State’s former police chief.

The Central California Blood Center was on campus from Nov. 14 to Nov. 16 for a blood drive sponsored by the Fresno State Police Department.

The blood drive was held in honor of former Fresno State Police Chief David Huerta, who passed away in 2019 after being hospitalized for 13 months. He endured a double lung transplant following the diagnosis of fibrosis in the lungs. Huerta was Fresno State’s police chief from 2004-18.

“He made many important contributions to ensure the safety of our campus community, for which we will be forever grateful. David was a true gentleman who always cared about others before himself, and his legacy of law-enforcement leadership will never be forgotten. Our campus community has lost a dear friend and colleague,” said Debbie Adishian-Astine, vice president for administration and chief financial officer in a press release in 2019.

Ryan Jackson, community development coordinator for Central California Blood Center, said Huerta was a supporter of blood drives.

“The former police chief, Huerta, was a huge advocate for blood donations. He was a staple for this annual November drive that we used to do, and now we’ve just done it in his honor since he passed. So the campus police department sponsors and strives, and they like to see it continue in his honor,” Jackson said.

The blood drive had over 300 participants over all three of the donation centers across campus. The three locations were located at the Resnick Student Union Room 207, parking lot P24 near the North Gym and parking lot P31 near the RSU.

Brianna Riuex, the blood center’s social media and event coordinator, explained that the center’s typical goal is to collect 400 donations every time it visits Fresno State.

“But our goal is to have about 400 donors per blood drive here at Fresno State. I feel like that’s a pretty good number,” Riuex said.

Stephanie Gomez, a freshman criminology student, told The Collegian why she decided to donate.

“I’ve always wanted to donate blood. I was first underweight to donate blood, and it wasn’t till now that I could donate blood. And so I decided to donate blood before I were to get older and if I was planning to get tattoos or anything,” Gomez said.

Another student, Valerie Carrillo, a senior kinesiology major, said she donated because of a specific fear.

“I’m trying to get over my fear of needles and thought it would just be a good thing to do, and give something before Christmas,” Carrillo said.

Justin Gomez, a business management major, said he donates blood because he knows it’s something that is always needed.

“Just why not? I mean donating blood is always a good thing that’s always needed, and I have free time, so there’s no reason not to,” he said.

The Blood Center will host another blood drive on campus in February. If students want to donate blood or volunteer for the blood center, visit its website here.

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