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Scholarship and bench created in memory of Molly Griffin

Feb. 21 marked the one year anniversary of the death of Fresno State nursing alumna Molly Griffin.

Molly lost her life at the age of 23 when a drunk driver, Hector Castillo-Pichardo, 24, ran a red light.

She graduated magna cum laude and was a surgery nurse at Madera Community Hospital.

“It’s been a year, but it feels like it was just a few weeks ago,” said Dave Dennis, a friend of the Griffins. “A year is really nothing when you’re missing a loved one.”

The Molly Taylor Griffin Nursing Honors Scholarship was created in remembrance of Molly by her parents, Doug and Doris Griffin, days after her passing.

“Our hope is that it will be given to a nursing student that will do great service to the community in the future,” Molly’s mother said. “We want to be able to help somebody pursue their nursing goal, become a nurse and do great things for the community.”  

Undergraduate nursing students with a 3.5 GPA or higher and are in their junior or senior year are eligible to apply.

“I think that scholarships are a very valuable way to support our students and I think that any of our students are deserving of having some assistance with their education,” said Molly’s former professor, Dr. Janine Spencer.

Additionally, a bench was installed in front of McLane Hall in honor of Molly.

Dennis, who also works as a painter on campus, said he thought of the idea of installing a bench on campus when he saw that there was a bench that was honoring another person.  

“I thought that it would be a good idea if we could do something like that for the family,” Dennis said.

The bench includes a plaque that features and promotes the phrase “#LiveLikeMolly.”

The goal for the hashtag is for others to do random acts of kindness and to be able to share what they’ve done for others by including #LiveLikeMolly in their social media posts.

“Molly was the type of person that liked to do random acts of kindness,” Dennis said, which is why the hashtag is for promoting others to do random acts of kindness.  

“When I think about her, of course I’m sad,” Spencer said, “but I think that it’s a wonderful way of acknowledging her accomplishment and trying to promote the acts of kindness.”

The bench took approximately three months to be build and was completed and installed on campus before Christmas, Dennis said.

Along with the plaque, the Griffins plan to add a photo of their daughter onto the bench, right above the plaque.

“I think that it’s a wonderful way of paying tribute to her and kind of keeping her memory alive,” Spencer said.