Candlelight Vigil for COD Football Player Shot by Officer
About 100 teammates, coaches and friends lit candles tonight in memory of 20-year-old Frank Tanuvasa.Photo: Video by kmir6.com
PALM DESERT - On Friday, police arrested a second person believed to be a part a burglary that lead to the shooting death of a College of the Desert football player.
22 year old Roman Tausaga, who also goes by Rusty, was arrested Friday evening.
Tausaga is also on the College of the Desert football team.
About 100 teammates, coaches and friends lit candles tonight in memory of 20-year-old Frank Tanuvasa.
We spoke with one of his coaches who says Tanuvasa was a kind, friendly man.
"Gigantic teddy bear, he was a gentle giant if you can describe a person like that" said the football equipment manager, Larry Zaborowski.
Larry knew Frank Tanuvasa for two years, he saw him last Saturday.
"My grandson jumped, ran out of the car, ran over to Frank's car, and Frank picked him up and gave him a great big bear hug, I haven't figured out how to tell my grandson yet," said Zaborowski.
At the football field Tanuvasa used to play on, his friends filled the bleachers and lit candles in his memory.
"He pretty much treated everybody like family, and I know he thought of all you football boys as his brothers, whether it was on or off the field," said Tanuvasa's girlfriend, Julia.
She spoke of his love of the game.
"I know he's probably playing up there right now, doing his little stomp and everything."
Teammates laid flowers on a memorial, and many tears as friends remembered Tanuvasa.
"Well I cried most of the night, my wife, kept her up, it was tough, this is not the first kind of thing we've gone through in my professional career, but I think its one of the closest people I've been through where a tragedy like this has happened," said Zaborowski.
According to police, when officers responded to a burglary call, Tanuvasa ran, then a struggle with an officer began and he was shot.
Two other men ran away.
And now another football player was arrested.
"As things are unfolding, there are other kids careers that are going to be very damaged for some senseless things," said Zaborowski.
The sheriff's department continues to investigate the case.
Meanwhile, Tanuvasa's friends mourn his loss.