Fourth Year UCSB Sociology Student Passes Away


Gwendolyn Wu
Executive Content Editor

A version of this story appeared in Volume 11, Issue 1 of The Bottom Line based on GoFundMe information. An update was later posted to the fundraiser stating that Chavez had been on life support and passed away on Wednesday night, which was confirmed by Chavez’s friends on GoFundMe.

An incoming fourth year University of California, Santa Barbara student passed away on Monday following a battle with meningitis. Marissa Chavez, a sociology major, was 21.

Chavez, who was from Hawaiian Gardens, Calif., showed interest in social causes on campus, as an active member of Hermanas Unidas and participating in a march and vigil for justice in Ayotzinapa in 2014. In a post on Facebook’s Free and For Sale group, a friend noted that Chavez would have been the first in her family to graduate from college.

A GoFundMe page to pay for Chavez’s medical expenses and memorial fund has raised over $7,500 as of press time.

“Marissa has always been such a kind soul, never failing to help those around her and surround them with love,” the GoFundMe read. “As a loving friend, caring daughter, sister and aunt, she never failed to put a smile on everyone’s face.”

Family and friends remembered her sense of humor and bright personality. “I remembered how cheerful you were with your unique laugh,” a friend wrote on the GoFundMe page. “And the way you’d tell stories, It [sic] would remind me of home.”

If you or anyone you know has been impacted by the news of Chavez’s passing, UCSB Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) can be reached on their 24-hour hotline at (805) 893-4411.