Two students die from COVID-19

Breahna Luera, News Editor

Two UTSA Roadrunners, Raymond Shappa and Rudy Stephen Valenzuela, died, aged 50 and 32 years old respectively, this summer after contracting COVID-19. Shappa, an information systems major, died on Aug. 13. Valenzuela, who was supposed to attend his first semester at UTSA as an economics major this semester, died on June 24.

Shappa is survived by his wife, two children and seven siblings.

“Ray loved cooking, building and engineering,” his obituary webpage said. “His hobby was fish-keeping. He maintained a beautiful saltwater reef tank which he custom built himself. He will be greatly missed by all.”

You can add a remembrance on his obituary guestbook webpage. 

Valenzuela is survived by his parents, three sisters and his nieces and nephews. 

“He was Rudy to his friends and Stephen to his family, but either way, to those whom he loved and to those who loved him, Rudy Stephen Valenzuela will always be the spark of light whose magnetic energy lit up a room wherever he went,” said his girlfriend, Bleah Patterson, according to his obituary webpage

According to the Roadrunner Remembrance webpage, where Shappa and Valenzuela are recognized as lost Roadrunners, there will be a Roadrunner Remembrance ceremony on a future date to commemorate students who have lost their lives in 2020. 

Since our community is unable to gather physically at this time, this page serves as a way to bring us together in a virtual space,” the website says.