Ruiz gave 49ers much `heart’

first_img Ruiz set league records at La Serna in the 100-meter high hurdles and 300-meter low hurdles. Ruiz is survived by her father Jorge, mother Rose and sister Monica. Ruiz’s father is a reserve sergeant for the Alhambra Police Department. Services will be held this Friday at 1 p.m. at Emmaus Lutheran Church, 840 S. Almansor St., Alhambra. “She will be dearly missed and our thoughts and prayers are with her family throughout these difficult days ahead,” Sythe said. Information for this report provided by the Long Beach State Sports Information office. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE Along with her family, Ruiz spearheaded a bone marrow drive this past January. As Sythe put it, “She knew that the chance of finding a match was slim; however, she wanted to increase the donor database so that a positive match could be found for others as well.” After graduating from Whittier’s La Serna High, Ruiz redshirted for the 49ers in 2002. The following year, she was a 400-meter hurdler and relay-team member for the 49ers. Ruiz posted what stands as LBSU’s fastest time in the 400 hurdles since 1997 and the No. 8 mark overall. She and her running teammates also recorded times that place them on top-10 lists in the school record books with their times in the indoor and outdoor 1,600-meter relays. “She was the person you wanted to give the baton to when you were behind,” Sythe said. “She always found that extra gear. And she did that, not only on the track, but in life, especially after being diagnosed.” But the cancer was rediscovered in August 2004 and Ruiz fought it since then. Despite this, she enrolled again prior to the current semester in an effort to complete her degree. “Brandii was a consummate teammate. She was the heart of our sprints and relay team,” said Andy Sythe, Long Beach State’s director of track and field, in a statement from the university. “For those that knew her, they knew that there was something special about her.” center_img Brandii Ruiz, who competed for the Long Beach State track and field team as a hurdler and sprinter in 2003, died Friday from non-Hodgkins lymphoma. She was 22. Ruiz was first diagnosed with the illness in November 2003. She battled the disease and doctors thought she had defeated it in May 2004. The biology major re-enrolled at LBSU last fall and planned to resume her collegiate athletic career. last_img

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