Another 31 people “without fixed abode” died in OC in June 2022 their names are:

Zumana DIARRA who died on June 1st in Rancho Santa Margarita

Erik QUINTERO CARRIZALES who died on June 3rd in Anaheim

Carlos DIAZ who died on June 3rd in Garden Grove

Julian MENDOZA RODRIGUEZ who died on June 6th in Santa Ana

James KINGDOM who died on June 8th in Huntington Beach

Edward SUAREZ who died on June 8th in Anaheim

Christopher AMAN who died on June 10th in Westminster

Oscar NAVALAGUNAS who died on June 10th in Santa Ana

Albert DIBACCO who died on June 10th in Orange

Christopher MARTIN who died on June 12th in Santa Ana

Juan VALENCIA CASAS who died on June 12th in Fountain Valley

Aaron VAN CURLER, JR. who died on June 14th in Westminster

John CARRANZA who died on June 15th in Santa Ana

Kenneth THOMPSON, JR. who died on June 16th in Santa Ana

Richard ORTEGA who died on June 17th in Santa Ana

Jon STORY who died on June 18th in Santa Ana

Edgar VARGAS who died on June 18th in Santa Ana

Erik HARTFORD who died on June 19th in Santa Ana

Richard JUNIO who died on June 21st in Cypress

Grover BEDINGFIELD, JR. who died on June 21st in Stanton

Kennard SMITH who died on June 21st in Santa Ana

Daniel RENTERIA who died on June 22nd in Santa Ana

Elias COLE JR. who died on June 22nd in Garden Grove

Colin PAYNE who died on June 23rd in Newport Beach

Robert MAY who died on June 23rd in Orange

Kenneth WASSENAAR, II who died on June 27th in Orange

Joshua CANTU who died on June 27th in Fountain Valley

Simon MOO CI who died on June 28th in Anaheim

Louis ARAGON who died on June 29th in Orange

Kenneth DEMARA who died on June 29th in Fullerton

Daniel BRISENO who died on June 30th in Garden Grove

This brings the number of homeless deaths in the County to 236 at mid-year.  Last year at this time the total was 185, in 2020 the number was 151, and in 2019, the last year before the onset of the COVID crisis, the number was 98.  Indeed, in 2019, the total number of deaths among those “without fixed abode” for the entire year was 209.

With six months, a 1/2 year, to go the number of homeless deaths has already exceeded the number of deaths for the whole of 2019.  Thus, the homeless death rate has effectively doubled since the onset of COVID and at this rate, the number of homeless deaths for the year is projected at 472. 

To look at it another way, by the County’s 2022 PIT Count there were 5718 people who were homeless in the County.  236 is 4.1% of 5718.  Thus 4.1% of the County’s homeless population has already died since the beginning of the year and unless something changes, and they’re currently is no reason at all to believe that something will, a full 8.2% of the county’s beginning of the year homeless population will be dead by its end.

At this point there is a lot that one could write: 

By the County’s same PIT Count there were 94 unsheltered homeless families in the County.  So understand there were 94 homeless families sleeping on our County’s streets.   At St. Philip Benizi Catholic Church we have encountered six such families in the past several months.  That there are any families at all in our county sleeping on the streets is baffling to me. 

It has also become known to us that a shuttered 250 hotel – the Hotel Fullerton – has been sold to be demolished to make way for a warehouse slated to be built in its place.  The hotel stands on industrially zoned land, so there’s nothing to impede it’s sale and future demolition except for the question of the morality of knocking down a building for people during a housing/homelessness crisis to make way for a building for the storage of things.   What kind of people have we become that we’d leave mothers with toddlers and three year olds on the street, while we knock down enormous hotels to store stuff.

So there are all kinds of surprisingly, even innovatively, wretched things happening in OC on the homeless front. 

However, I’d like to leave readers with the thought of the list of all the names of the 236 people who’ve already died “without fixed abode” in OC this year and to remember that unless something changes, a second list, equally long, will be compiled by year’s end – that over the course of this year over 8% of the County’s homeless population, alive at the beginning of this year will be dead. 

Fr. Dennis Kriz, OSM, Pastor St. Philip Benizi Catholic Church, Fullerton.

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