Highway renamed in honor of CDCR officer killed in Shasta County crash last year

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Following the death of High Desert State Prison Correctional Officer Richard Bianchi Jr., who passed away after a solo-vehicle crash near Old Station in Shasta County last year, the Assembly Transportation Committee passed Assembly Concurrent Resolution 32 by naming a highway in his honor on Monday, April 12. The bill was passed on a unanimous vote of 15-0.


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Officer Bianchi Jr. died in a single-vehicle, rollover crash sometime in the early morning hours of June 25, 2020. He was 53-years-old at the time of his passing and is survived by his wife of 25 years, Pam, and two adult children, Richie and Rachel.

Officials at the time reported Bianchi was driving nearly 130 miles from the High Desert State Prison in Susanville to provide security coverage for an inmate already being treated at a Redding hospital when the deadly rollover crash occurred. There were no known witnesses to the fatal accident occurred, CHP previously reported.

“Correctional Officer Bianchi’s death is felt through this entire department,” CDCR Secretary Ralph Diaz said after Bianchi’s death. “His service to California was largely unseen by the citizens of this state but his daily work and dedication will not be forgotten be his peers and myself.”

When officials arrived at the scene of the early morning crash at around 5:30 a.m., they discovered Bianchi had been ejected from an unmarked State vehicle after it careened off SR-44 and overturned down a steep embankment along the north side of the rural mountain highway. CHP did not specify if Bianchi was wearing his seat belt at the time of the accident.

Bianchi had already succumbed to his serious traumatic injuries and he was pronounced deceased at the scene, CHP and CDCR reported at the time.

“Officer Bianchi Jr. was known for treating his fellow officers, along with inmates of the High Desert State Prison, with dignity and respect, and was admired for his kindness, generosity of spirit, love of family, eternal optimism, and genuine ,capacity to share time and talents with others,” said Assemblywoman Megan Dahle (R-Bieber), who authored the bill.

“He was a consummate professional, as well as an excellent member of the High Desert State Prison team, who is more than deserving of honor for his service,” Dahle continued.

SEE RELATED ORIGINAL STORY: CDCR officer killed in rollover crash near Old Station

ACR 32 designates the portion of State Route 36, from post mile 25.356 at State Route 139 to post mile R29.390 at Junction State Route 395, in Lassen County, to honor his memory and service.