A livecast raffle was held at Adrian’s Boxing Gym Aug. 10 as local Daniel Ochoa donated a set of prized boxing gloves — signed by Blythe’s hometown WBA (World Boxing Association) super featherweight champion Andrew “El Chango” Cancio and Golden Boy Promotions CEO Oscar De La Hoya — to the family of Maria Santos.
The Ochoa family also donated the photos of authentication and an official “Chango” shirt to the $10 per ticket raffle, the raised proceeds of which were provided directly to the Santos family.
A surprised Cade Alaniz, a friend of the Santos’ children who bought 10 tickets, was drawn as the ticket winner by Lola Alaniz.
“We did this because we knew the family and wanted to do something for them,” stated Daniel Ochoa, who had the items signed at Cancio’s April 2 hometown celebration at the Joe Wine Recreation Center. “Always a blessing to be able to help when possible. Also, Danelle Alaniz help set it all up. Maria holds a special place in our hearts.”
Santos was killed in an alleged murder-suicide in Ehrenberg, Ariz., June 26. She was the Palo Verde Unified School District (PVUSD) Head Start director, a pre-school teacher and a mother of four.
“Upon arrival, we learned that Francisco Rodriguez Santos had allegedly shot his wife and then committed suicide by way of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The victim was immediately transported to a local hospital where she later succumbed to her injuries,” stated the La Paz County Sheriff’s Department. “We don’t like to report suicides due to family privacy, however, we feel that we need to get this out because of all the misinformation that is already being circulated. We do not believe anyone else was involved in this matter and there aren’t any outstanding suspects that were involved. We would like to offer our sincerest condolences to the family.”
The following morning, on June 27, PVUSD publicly extended its condolences to the Santos family.
“Santos will always be remembered as a compassionate and courageous leader with PVUSD, who exhibited kindness, patience and delight, wherever she went. To all who knew her, Santos was also an easy going, humble individual who always had an agreeable spirit and love for life in itself. Being a person bursting with bubbliness, her appreciation and love for life was not only seen with the 3 to 5 year olds she managed every day, but also with her own children, who stood as the beacon of her life,” stated PVUSD. “Today, we grieve this loss of our colleague and will miss the light she shown in every capacity, during her time with us. While no words can take away the sorrow, we will take comfort in the beautiful memories left behind; for Maria was an amazing friend, with a heart full of love, strength and goodness. To the Santos family, please accept our heartfelt sympathies on the loss of your loved one. We’re thinking of you during this difficult time.”
A community barbacoa dinner fundraiser was also held on July 10, organized by Ehrenberg Elementary School teachers and friends of Santos.