College

Thursday, Jan 17 2013 11:30 PM

Former BC track star dies in Las Vegas car crash

By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

LAS VEGAS -- Farrilyn Gaston Diaz of Las Vegas, who was the first Bakersfield College woman to win a Southern California regional track championship, was killed when her car struck a semitrailer on Interstate 15 in Las Vegas at about 6:30 a.m. Monday, the las Vegas Sun reported.

Gaston, 54, is a member of the BC Track and Field Hall of Fame. She competed in track in 1977-78 and won the SoCal regional in the shot put with a 39-11 in 1978.

That mark set a BC record in the shot and she also set the BC women's record in the discus (123-11/2). Also in 1978, she won the shot (39-71/2) and discus (119-1/2) at the Metropolitan Conference Championships.

Nevada Highway Patrol troopers told the Sun that Gaston's car was traveling northbound on I-15 when it drifted across the dirt median and struck a southbound truck. She was pronounced dead at the scene, the Sun reported.

"She was one of my first athletes. She was great," said Sandy Bowers, who was BC's throws coach in the late 1970s. "Some of those you don't forget."

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