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Serving the Fullerton Community Since 1922

The Hornet

Andrea Vazquez: Devoted daughter who aspired to be a fashion icon

Fullerton College student Andrea Vazquez, who was murdered in August, was a quiet child with a good sense of humor. She wanted to be a famous clothing designer and become a millionaire.
Andrea+Vazquez+grew+up+in+Downey%2C+California+with+her+mother%2C+her+father+and+her+sister.+
Edlyn Vazquez
Andrea Vazquez grew up in Downey, California with her mother, her father and her sister.

Andrea Vazquez’s father recalls that when he saw her drive alone to Fullerton College for the first time, he was proud of seeing her accomplishing one of her goals in life.

“Even still when she got her license, I was still driving with her to school,” said Andrea’s father Eduardo Vazquez. “The day I let her drive alone for the first time I told her: Today you did not make me mentally step on the brakes. Tomorrow, I will let you drive alone.’”

Andrea, a fashion student at Fullerton College, was found murdered in a field in Moreno Valley after being abducted from a park in Whittier in August 2023. She was 19. The Vazquez family shared some of the life story of their youngest daughter, Andrea, in an interview in Spanish with The Hornet.

Andrea was raised in Downey, California, where she lived in a one-story house with her father, Eduardo Vazquez; mother, Ana Vazquez; and her older sister, Edlyn Vazquez.

 

Ana said that as her daughter was growing up, she was very quiet and introverted. “She was not very social, but she was funny. She did not have many friends, but she had good friends,” said Ana.

She liked to keep her room organized and neat. Edlyn said that her sister would always complain when someone left stuff out of place.

However, Andrea always created a space for her pets in the house.

She first wanted to be a veterinarian, although her career choice changed down the line. At 10 years old, Andrea took in a stray black-and-white cat, whom she named Figaro. The cat, who is now over 9 years old, still lives with the Vazquez family.

“When someone loves animals, that is when a good heart starts,” said Ana.

Ana said that her daughter was really good at lifting people’s moods. She mentioned one of her friends had an accident and was left in a wheelchair, and Andrea by talking to him, lifted him up from the sadness he had.

She also said that Andrea made her days happier many times. She showed a Mother’s Day card that Andrea wrote for her, which she signed, “Love & Lavishly, Andrea.”

“It took me a lot of work to understand this word,” said Ana with a laugh.

Ana Vazquez kisses her daughter, Andrea Vazquez on the cheek. Ana said Andrea was a devoted daughter. (Edlyn Vazquez)

Originally from San Juan de Los Lagos, Jalisco, Mexico, Eduardo said that he used to spend summers there with 5-year-old Andrea.

“She was very little, and I remember when she came back, she came with an accent,” said Edlyn.

Her father also encouraged her to get involved with sports at a young age. Andrea played soccer from ages 7 to 14. Eduardo said that every year, they received a picture album and a trophy for her from the Downey youth soccer league.

“After she turned 14, it just did not catch her attention anymore,” said Eduardo.

Andrea Vazquez poses with her father, Eduardo Vazquez, as she holds a soccer trophy. Andrea played soccer from 7 to 14 years old. (Edlyn Vazquez)

In high school, Andrea started having a strong interest in fashion. “Junior and senior years. That’s when she was more interested. She would dress herself all cute and all fashionable,” said Edlyn.

Andrea also really enjoyed listening to music. Her favorite artist was Kali Uchis, who also inspired her dressing style.

Her mother said that she always talked about wanting to design clothes for artists and expensive brands and even create her own online boutique.

“She wanted to be famous. She wanted to have a name in fashion,” said Ana.

Fashion design professor Renee Young taught Andrea when she started at Fullerton College. She had completed her first year as a fashion major and was about to start her second year just days before she was murdered. Young said that Andrea had a unique style of designing and always pushed herself to do more.

“I remember where she sat and that she was very eager and excited to start her career as a designer,” said Young.

Young also added that Andrea was always on top of what was trending at the moment. She knew the trending designs and her fashion gallery, which she made as a final project, was one of the most unique in that class.

Ana mentioned that what motivated her daughter was becoming a millionaire in the future. She always liked high quality products and enjoyed going to neighborhoods that had big houses that she could admire.

“In my phone, I had her contact as ‘Millionaire Andrea,’” said Ana.

Even though Andrea and her sister were 15 years apart, Edlyn said they were best friends. “She would say that we were soulmates,” said Edlyn. “But we were always very opposite.”

While Edlyn’s wardrobe is dominated by the color black, Andrea’s wardrobe consisted of mainly white. Edlyn recalled a time when she was at the mall with her sister. Upon entering a store, they went separate ways, shopping to their personal likings.

“When we found each other again, we had the same shirt,” said Edlyn. “I had it in black, and she had it in white.”

They hung out together all the time. Edlyn said she remembers when they had “coffee runs” to Philz Coffee, where they bought small drinks to take on their way home, and big ones to save and drink later. Once, they even flew together to Amsterdam to see one of their favorite music artists, Tame Impala.

Edlyn has a tattoo on her neck with the name of Andrea. She said that Andrea also tattooed Edlyn’s name in the same spot when she turned 18. “It took me years to find out,” said their mother.

Andrea Vazquez (left) celebrates her high school graduation with her sister Edlyn Vazquez (right). (Edlyn Vazquez)

Andrea was closer in age to her nephew, Edlyn’s son, than to her sister. She had a good relationship with him and helped him get ready to go to school when they were both in elementary.

One time, Edlyn said as she laughed, that her son complained at school that his aunt screamed at him in the morning. The police went home and saw that the aunt was a child of around the same age.

“She called me, and she said, ‘Mom, the police are going to take me,’” said Ana, while laughing.

Edlyn has another daughter, RaeLynn who is 8 years old, but Andrea wanted to be best friends with her as she grew up. Andrea and RaeLynn had a similar age gap like Andrea did with Edlyn. According to Edlyn, Andrea wanted to have the same type of relationship with Edlyn’s daughter that Edlyn had with her.

A memorial was created at Penn Park in Whittier on Aug. 29, 2023 for Andrea Vazquez, the last place she was seen alive before she was found murdered in Moreno Valley. (Cesar Garcia)

Andrea’s sudden and violent death left a big void in the heart of the family. The family was forced into the spotlight after Andrea’s death, and they say all other news sources who have contacted them have asked only about the case, not about Andrea’s life. As they wait for her case to advance and seek justice for her murder, they are focusing on remembering all the loving moments they spent with her.

“As my daughter, I could have not ever had a better daughter,” said Ana. “I would not change anything from her.”

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About the Contributors
Guadalupe Gonzalez, Copy Editor
Guadalupe Gonzalez is a first semester staff reporter and Copy Editor for The Hornet Newspaper. When not writing, she enjoys sewing, reading, and watching thriller or horror movies and spending time with her two cats. Her goal in journalism is to be a news reporter for a newspaper media outlet.
Pedro Saravia, News Editor
Pedro Saravia is the News Desk Editor for The Hornet Newspaper. He previously wrote for Inside Fullerton magazine. Pedro is a JACC award winning journalist for his work investigating Title IX issues at Fullerton College. Pedro enjoys going to the gym, playing and watching soccer, and hanging with his brother. He aspires to be a politics and sports reporter.
Cesar Garcia, Staff Photographer
Cesar Garcia, a mechanical design engineer and a photographer for The Hornet newspaper. He skillfully navigates the dual worlds of precision and creativity. In his engineering career, he excels in designing innovative solutions. As one of the newspaper's dedicated photographers, Cesar captures life's stories with a keen eye for detail and compelling narratives. Beyond his professional pursuits, he finds solace and joy amidst the electrifying atmosphere of live concerts, where he marvels at the engineering precision of music. Cesar's life forms a harmonious tapestry, blending technical prowess, artistic expression, a love for nature and the outdoors, and the exhilaration of live performances into a captivating and multifaceted narrative.

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