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Davis, California

Saturday, February 24, 2024

In Memoriam: Markos Huerta


UC Davis freshman remembered for empathy, kindness, leadership

UC Davis first-year student Markos Huerta passed away in November of 2017. The teenager was a victim of a car accident on Highway 160 in Rio Vista, California.

Before coming to Davis, Huerta lived in Oakdale, Calif. Huerta’s fraternity, Nu Alpha Kappa, noted in his obituary that he was very close with his parents and his two younger siblings.

“He loved his amazing family very much,” the obituary reads. “Everything he did was to always make them proud.”

Huerta’s father, Rafael Huerta, recalled that his son always made time for his brother and sister and loved to spend time with his family.

“He always liked to do family things,” Rafael said. “We always did things together.”

In addition to his family, Huerta cared greatly for each and every one of his friends. Rafael describes him as incredibly empathetic and very aware of his friends’ moods and feelings.

“He cared a lot about his friends, and that was one of the things we started to realize after the accident,” Rafael said. “All his friends started coming to us […] and telling us how he would make them feel really, really special.”

At UC Davis, Huerta was a neurology, physiology and behavior major. According to his obituary, he wanted to become a plastic surgeon with the intention of helping others be comfortable with their appearances.

“He said he knew what it was like to have insecurities, and he wanted to help others fix their insecurities and make them happy,” the obituary reads.

Huerta was a member of the Kappa Chapter of Nu Alpha Kappa, a “Latino-based fraternity.” The fraternity’s core values are education, culture and brotherhood. His brothers remember him as dedicated to academics, his fraternity brothers and, especially, his family.  Huerta’s obituary notes that he was an exceptional leader who demonstrated initiative and drive in all that he did.

“He showed tremendous work ethic, discipline and outstanding leadership,” said Nikko Mendoza, the president of Nu Alpha Kappa, in an email. “His initiative and proactive thought at his age was and is remarkable.”

As a brother of Nu Alpha Kappa, Huerta was the president of the fraternity’s Tau Pledge Class. Rafael noted that Huerta was a great leader who would push his friends and peers to strive for success.

“He would push them to be better than themselves,” Rafael said. “He was an influence to tell them, ‘You could do better,’ and ‘Don’t settle for less.’”

After his passing, Huerta became a member of Nu Alpha Kappa’s Omega Class, which honors the deceased members of the fraternity. This designation honors Huerta’s contributions to the UC Davis chapter of Nu Alpha Kappa and cements his place in the fraternity’s history.

In honor of Huerta, his family created the Markos Huerta Scholarship Fund. According to its GoFundMe page, the scholarship will support students in need of financial assistance. The scholarship has already raised over $4,500 in honor of Huerta.


Written by: Jacqueline Moore — campus@theaggie.org


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