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Friday, January 14, 2011

Joe Olivares Hernandez, UCSF Medical Student Beaten to Death, Wanted to be a Family Doctor

Posted By on Fri, Jan 14, 2011 at 6:50 PM

click to enlarge Joey
  • Joey

Joe Olivares Hernandez was just four months away from graduating from UCSF medical school when he was beaten to death at Temple Nightclub last weekend.

His sister, Tonia Baca, 39, said her little brother, who the family called Joey, was out with a classmate at Temple Nightclub when he was attacked by an Asian man he didn't know. His sister said he was a religious, nonviolent person, who had never even been in a fight before.

"What we've been told is that he was retreating, he was trying to get away while he was being attacked," his sister said. "It was not a brawl, he was attacked -- he was a completely innocent person."

Hernandez, 30, was a native of Southern California, but moved to San Francisco four years ago to attend medical school. He was truly a selfless person who wanted to be a family doctor, and help low-income and poor families have better access to medical care, Baca said.

This was evidenced by his monthlong stay in Mexico where he worked in a hospital and learned Spanish so that he could better communicate with the immigrant populations back home and help them understand their own medical conditions. After Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, Hernandez traveled there, volunteering to help victims get medical treatment, Baca added.

"Joey not only believed in God, he was God-like," Baca said.

Hernandez, who had a girlfriend, was a hard-working academic who also treasured time with his family. He loved to run and had already completed four marathons, Baca said.

Hernandez was at Temple Nightclub at about 1:20 a.m. on Sunday when he and another man were assaulted. Hernandez was beaten and knocked into a coma. He was declared brain-dead and died on Wednesday.

Twenty minutes after Hernandez was beaten, two more men were stabbed with broken bottles by three Asian men, according to police. The night before, a stabbing occurred at Temple Nightclub.

No arrests have been made.

The City's Entertainment Commission has since ordered the nightclub to double the number of security cameras and to stop selling bottled beer on weekends.

"We want everyone to know how devastating this loss was to us," Baca said. 

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


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