The Desert IndependentTM

Serving Blythe and the Desert Regions of the Southwest Since 2001


Ceremony Held to Honor Fallen Agent

January 23, 2016

GLAMIS, Calif – A small group of Border Patrol agents and friends gathered at the 1151 checkpoint on California State Route 78 near Glamis, for a remembrance ceremony honoring Border Patrol Agent Aurelio Esparz Valencia who died near here on January 25, 1996.

He was working south of Blythe Border Patrol Station’s 1151 checkpoint when he spotted a van he believed to be carrying illegal aliens. While attempting a U-turn to pursue the van, his service vehicle was struck by a southbound vehicle. Agent Valencia died at the scene.

Agent Valencia entered on duty as a Border Patrol agent June 13, 1988, but had previously served as a student aide in the Tucson Sector. Blythe Station was his first and only assignment as an agent. He was 32 years old at the time of his death and had been an agent for more than seven years.

Yuma Sector Chief Patrol Agent Anthony Porvaznik, speaking at the ceremony, praised Valencia’s dedication and lamented his loss. “We must never forget those who have made the ultimate sacrifice on behalf of a grateful Nation,” said CPA Porvaznik.

Yuma Sector Border Patrol agents effectively combat smuggling organizations attempting to illegally transport people and contraband through southwestern Arizona and California. Citizens can help the Border Patrol and U.S. Customs and Border Protection by calling 1-866-999-8727 toll-free to report suspicious activity. Callers can remain anonymous.

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