Thirty-nine people died “without fixed abode,” homeless, in OC in July 2021. Their names are:
Christopher SMITH who died on July 1st in Buena Park, Richard ESTRADA ARELLANO who died on July 3rd in Anaheim, Marcelo FARIAS VALENCIA who died on July 3rd in Santa Ana, Joshua HUEY who died on July 5th in Huntington Beach, Stephen RINEBERG who died on July 5th in Garden Grove, Timothy CLARK who died on July 7th in Garden Grove, Alfredo AGUINALDO who died on July 8th in Fullerton, Tara BEOUGHER who died on July 8th in Garden Grove, Jose RIVERA who died on July 8th in Santa Ana, Charles ARME JR. who died on July 8th in Orange, Daniel ESCOBAR who died on July 9th in Santa Ana, Greggory TILDEN who died on July 10th in Fountain Valley, Derek KEEN who died on July 11th in Fountain Valley, James STALLCUP who died on July 11th in Anaheim, Alicia FUENTES who died on July 12th in Anaheim, Jeffrey GLEASON who died on July 12th in Costa Mesa, Leticia MAHE who died on July 14th in Garden Grove, Troy LOZANO who died on July 14th in Fullerton, Douglas TYLER who died on July 14th in Newport Beach, Joseph PARSAKIS who died on July 15th in Anaheim, Andrew KEISLER who died on July 16th in Costa Mesa, David CHAVEZ SR. who died on July 16th in Anaheim, Enrique LOVATO who died on July 16th in Anaheim, Patricia SMITH who died on July 17th in Fullerton, Dennis MCCULLOCH who died on July 20th in Santa Ana, Jaime GARDUNO RODRIGUEZ who died on July 23rd in Anaheim, Ricardo CORDOVA BARRAGAN who died on July 25th in Newport Beach, Roberto ESPINOZA who died on July 25th in Fullerton, Hunter EVANS who died on July 26th in Anaheim, Steve STRONG who died on July 26th in Anaheim, Moises ZEPEDA who died on July 27th in Costa Mesa, Jamie HOWARD who died on July 28th in Huntington Beach, Jose CASTENION who died on July 28th in Santa Ana, Jorge RODRIGUEZ who died on July 29th in Anaheim, Richard MILLAN who died on July 30th in Laguna Hills, Alexis WHITE who died on July 30th in Santa Ana, Brian BOLES who died on July 31st in Garden Grove, Aaron SPONSELLER who died on July 31st in Santa Ana and Bradly GASTON who died on July 31st in Santa Ana.
This is the second highest number of people to die on our streets in a single month since we started to publish their names here in 2018. For the year, 224 people have already died without fixed abode in OC, a number which already exceeds the 209 who died for the entire year of 2019, and we have five months to go.
So without a doubt, last month was a terrible month for the homeless of OC. Yet in place of positive action to find places for OC’s homeless to go, last month’s response seems to be going in the opposite direction:
In Fullerton in the North, the police seem bent on seizing the vehicles of its RV-homeless population or otherwise driving them into the neighboring cities. Four people without fixed abode died here in Fullerton last month, the highest one-month total since we began to keep track of the monthly totals.
In the Center of the County, the City of Orange, without a single shelter to its name has decided to try to close down its only Soup Kitchen thus ending any credible outreach to its poorest, most vulnerable residents in the city.
Finally, in the South, San Clemente seems to be seeking to close its encampments and drive off its homeless citizens to … somewhere, really don’t care where.
Is this cruelty necessary? No. Be they managed campgrounds, be they managed parking lots, be it simply asking for OC’s share of the funds that both the State and the Federal government have made available to tackle this problem, there are solutions besides driving off the poor or stripping them of their remaining assets, which for RV or otherwise vehicle dwellers still would amount to a few thousand dollars.
But as we wait, people keep dying, 39 last month, well more than one a day. Shame.
Fr. Dennis Kriz, OSM, Pastor St. Philip Benizi Catholic Church, Fullerton.
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