Obituary: Ofelia "Faye" Cruz – May 26, 1974 – Oct. 15, 2010
October 19, 2010
Ofelia “Faye” Cruz passed away peacefully on Oct. 15, 2010, after a long and courageous battle with lung cancer with brain metastasis. As a nonsmoking, collegiate basketball and volleyball player, her aggressive fight against cancer inspired all who heard her story and her fight will continue on because of her participation in pioneering research and treatments.
Born and raised in Truckee, CA, Faye exhibited unparalleled success in athletics as publicly displayed in the Tahoe Truckee High School Hall of Fame. Her love for basketball, in particular, led her to Sierra College then Chapman University in Orange, CA, where she continued to excel on and off the court. She received her Bachelors degree in Criminal Justice as well as a minor in Education. She went on to become an inspiring elementary teacher in Long Beach, CA.
Ofelia is survived by her father, J. Santa Maria Cruz; her mother, Teresa Cruz; her brothers Jose and Nic Cruz; “her little healers” – niece and God daughter Maribela and nephew Izaiah; her fro-sister Janelle Reasor; her lifelong friends; and a large extended family.
Ofelia’s mission in life was to teach, motivate and inspire all of those she came in contact with. She led by example, aggressively fighting her cancer with supreme courage. She participated in several clinical trials and endured four major brain surgeries with the hope of furthering the war on cancer. She used her disease to inspire and teach others, to bring awareness to health and wellness, to unite communities, and to show the world that with God anything is possible. Her strong spirit and incomparable strength forced several Doctors to throw away the book on cancer statistics.
Her family, students and countless friends will remember Faye forever as a true competitor, a gifted athlete, a great friend, a dedicated teacher and a constant inspiration. She carried a contagious smile as she led by example teaching us all to have courage, strength, hope and faith in our daily lives no matter what the challenges.
The Viewing will be at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 280 Oak Tree Lane, Lincoln, CA. on Thursday, Oct. 21, from 5 p.m. – 9 p.m. with The Rosary at 7 p.m. Funeral Mass will be at 10 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 22, at the same location. The Grave Side Service will immediately follow at Santa Clara Memorial Park, 250 Santa Clara Way, Lincoln, CA. A reception celebrating her life will take place at McBean Park Pavilion, 65 McBean Park Drive, Lincoln, CA following all services from 12:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.