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Fundraiser for martial arts instructor shot to death in Cathedral City

The local martial arts community is coming together to raise money for an instructor shot to death earlier this week.

Cathedral City police found Ramon Diaz, 47, suffering trauma to the body Wednesday night on the 31300 block of Whispering Palms Trail. Police later confirmed Diaz had been shot. Diaz succumbed to his injuries at the hospital.

No arrests have been made and police have not released any information on a possible suspect. Anyone with any information into his death is urged to call CCPD at 760-202-2488.

Diaz was an instructor at Palm Springs Jiu-Jitsu. Students and staff described him as a good man who touched the lives of so many. Local UFC fighter Cub Swanson credited Diaz for his start in MMA.

{“url”:”https://twitter.com/CubSwanson/status/979444532558233600″,”author_name”:”Cub Swanson”,”author_url”:”https://twitter.com/CubSwanson”,”html”:”&#lt;blockquote class=”twitter-tweet”&#gt;&#lt;p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”&#gt;RIP to the Amazing Man who introduced me to BJJ and MMA. Ramon Diaz was my first instructor & I can honestly say that if it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be where I am today &#lt;a href=”https://t.co/xjUQU6CQ7m”&#gt;pic.twitter.com/xjUQU6CQ7m&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;/p&#gt;– Cub Swanson (@CubSwanson) &#lt;a href=”https://twitter.com/CubSwanson/status/979444532558233600?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”&#gt;March 29, 2018&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;/blockquote&#gt;n&#lt;script async src=”https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″&#gt;&#lt;/script&#gt;n”,”width”:550,”height”:null,”type”:”rich”,”cache_age”:”3153600000″,”provider_name”:”Twitter”,”provider_url”:”https://twitter.com”,”version”:”1.0″}

Ana Luisa Gastelum spent four to five years learning jiu-jitsu from Diaz.

She said he was an instructor who loved all, and was loved by all.

“He really meant something to everyone,” Gastelum said. “I was very shy when I started. He helped me come out of my shell [and] be more confident by teaching me the power that I had within me.”

The news of his death left her and others including Hurricane Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Owner Josh Dubinsky in shock.

“It’s been an emotional roller coaster,” Dubinsky said. “Lots going on. We need some answers.”

Dozens spent the weekend rolling for Ramon Diaz, hitting the mat practicing jiu-jitsu at Hurricane Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in Cathedral City, while raising money for the Diaz family.

Dubinsky and others said their goal is to raise $10,000 to help with funeral expenses.

“It’s a great turnout, and this is all for Ramon,” Dubinsky said. “This is what he would’ve wanted. He’d want us on the mats celebrating his life.”

“I know that he lived a good life,” Gastelum said. He loved what he was doing. He loved teaching. He loved everyone around him.”

Dubinsky said Hurricane Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and other martial arts locations are accepting donations to help Diaz’s family:

Palm Springs Jiu-Jitsu Decoded Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (Palm Springs) Yucca Valley Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Kihon MMA (Desert Hot Springs) Hand to Hand MMA (Twentynine Palms)

A GoFundMe page has been created to accept donations online.

KESQ News Team

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