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El Paso Shooting Victim Spent Years Trying To Obtain A Visa For Her Daughter Only To Be Shot The Week She Obtained It

As we continue to wade through the details of the El Paso tragedy, we continue to learn more about the innocent lives that were taken on that day. We have twenty victims who all had families and friends who loved them. Children lost parents and parents lost children. In a way, we all lost a part of our community along with a sense of safety we assumed we had before this massacre. The heartbreaking stories are sure to continue as we learn more about the victims but this latest bit of information is truly devastating.

One of the twenty victims who was killed the morning of August 3rd, Gloria Irma Marquez, died days before she accomplished a 15-year quest.

Twitter / @ksieff

For the past 15 years, Márquez, who is a Mexican native, fought to get her daughter a United States Visa. The two have been separated for over 13 years and were waiting for the documentation to allow them to be reunited in the States. Unfortunately, Márquez never saw this come to pass. 

After news of the shooting broke, friends and family of Márquez tried to locate her. A friend of her daughter’s even created a Facebook post searching for the woman. However, it was no use. Márquez had been in that Wal-Mart when the shooting began and she had lost her life there. 

Heartbreakingly enough, her daughter, Ruby Romero, received her American Visa days after losing her mother. 

GoFundMe / Brianna Klein

The documentation came just in time for Romero to attend her mother’s El Paso burial. During this devastating time, Romero and her siblings are just trying to put the pieces of their lives back together. The loss of their mother was a devastating one but it was made worse by the physical distance forced between Márquez and Romero. 

GoFundMe fundraiser was started for the family by Márquez’s niece, Brianna Klein. In the fundraiser, photos and memories of the late mother and her family show a life full of love and dedication to her children. 

“Gloria was a dedicated mother, grandmother, and friend,” the GoFundMe states. “It’s in times like these that we come together to help people in these unanticipated times of loss and sadness to help one another and extend a helping hand to the people we care for.”

News of this sad event hit Twitter hard and users were quick to express the need for gun legislation.

Twitter / @lclord76

Whenever our nation faces yet another act of domestic terrorism, like what we saw in El Paso, the gun control debate refreshes. Honestly, the only way to prevent this from happening again is by voting out representatives who oppose sensible legislation that makes it more difficult to purchase assault rifles. As this tweet suggests, we need to vote for politicians that will have our — and not the gun lobbyists’ — best interest at heart.

Some Twitter users pointed out the importance of hearing these stories no matter how heartbreaking they are.

Twitter / @Cronewomanchane

Márquez’s daughter should have been celebrating the moment she received her Visa. Instead, she is faced with the trauma of burying her mother. There have been several tragic stories to come out of El Paso and it hurts every time we are confronted with them. However, we have to pay attention. Not just to honor the victims and their families, we also have to look at the reality that White Supremacy’s hateful rhetoric has created.

This Twitter user called out the absurd immigration process that the United States follows.

Twitter / @realsuejeffers

Besides the terrible assault that resulted in twenty deaths, the tragedy here is the immigration process itself. Any kind of system that would separate a mother from her child is inherently immoral. The treatment of immigrants by the United States government is subhuman. If a stigma didn’t exist that said that migrants were an “infestation” to this country, the massacre in El Paso wouldn’t have happened. For better or for worse, the disgraceful treatment of immigrants helps to radicalize and validate White Supremacy.

Our hearts go out the the Romero family and the entire community of El Paso. We’re sure this isn’t the last sad story we will hear from this tragedy and we will remember each one.

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One Year Later, The Latino Community Remembers The El Paso Shooting

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One Year Later, The Latino Community Remembers The El Paso Shooting

Mario Tama / Getty Images

On August 3, 2019, a man entered a Walmart in El Paso, Texas and killed 23 customers and injured 23 more. The shooter, Patrick Crusius, went to the Walmart with the expressed purpose of killing Mexican and Mexican-Americans. One year later, the community is remembering those lost.

One year ago today, a man killed 23 people in an El Paso Walmart targeting our community.

The Latino community was stunned when Patrick Crusius opened fire and killed 23 people in El Paso, Texas. The gunman wrote a manifesto and included his desire to kill as many Mexicans and Mexican-Americans he could in the El Paso Walmart. The days after were filled with grieving the loss of 23 people and trying to understand how this kind of hate could exist in our society.

Representative Veronica Escobar, who represents El Paso, is honoring the victims today.

Rep. Escobar was on the scene shortly after the shooting to be there for her community. The shooting was a reminder of the dangers of the anti-Latino and xenophobic rhetoric that the Trump administration was pushing for years.

“One year ago, our community and the nation were shocked and heartbroken by the horrific act of domestic terrorism fueled by racism and xenophobia that killed 23 beautiful souls, injured 22, and devasted all of us,” Rep. Escobar said in a statement. “Today will be painful for El Pasoans, especially for the survivors and the loved ones of those who were killed, but as we grieve and heal together apart, we must continue to face hate with love and confront xenophobia by treating the stranger with dignity and hospitality.”

El Pasoans are coming together today to remember the victims of the violence that day.

Latinos are a growing demographic that will soon eclipse the white communities in several states. Some experts in demographic shifts understand that this could be a terrifying sign for the white population. These changing demographics give life to racist and hateful ideologies.

“When you have a few people of color, the community is not seen so much as a threat,” Maria Cristina Morales, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Texas at El Paso, told USA Today about the fear of changing demographics. “But the more that the population grows – the population of Latinos grow for instance – the more fear that there’s going to be a loss of power.”

The international attack is still felt today because of the constant examples of white supremacy still active today.

“It doesn’t occur to you that there’s a war going on, and there’s always been a war going on—the helicopters the barbed wire—but you just kind of didn’t see it,” David Dorado Romo, an El Paso historian who lost a friend in the shooting, told Time Magazine.

The sudden reminder of the hate out there towards the Latino community was felt nationwide that day. The violent attack that was planned out revealed the true cost of that hate that has been pushed by some politicians.

“El Paso families have the right to live free from fear, and I will continue to honor the victims and survivors with action,” Rep. Escobar said in her statement. “Fighting to end the gun violence and hate epidemics that plague our nation.”

READ: As El Paso Grieves Their Loss, Here Is Everything We Know About The Victims Of The El Paso Massacre, Which Were Mostly Latino

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He Spent Nine Months Fighting For His Life Since The El Paso Shooting But Unfortunately He Became The 23rd Victim Of The Massacre

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He Spent Nine Months Fighting For His Life Since The El Paso Shooting But Unfortunately He Became The 23rd Victim Of The Massacre

Facebook / Garcia Family

It’s been nine months since the El Paso Massacre – on August 3, 2019 – in which now 23 people lost their lives. Amid the global Coronavirus pandemic, El Paso and its Latino community struggle to rebuild their faith and their hope.

In the wake of the attack, much of the nation was grief-stricken as El Paso’s large Latino community came under attack by an alleged white nationalist. Now, the community is once again mourning the loss of one of their own as the massacre claims another victim – nine months later.

A victim of the attack died in the hospital nearly nine months after the massacre.

In a statement, Del Sol Medical Center’s CEO said, “After a nearly nine-month fight, our hearts are heavy as we report Guillermo ‘Memo’ Garcia, our last remaining patient being treated from the El Paso shooting, has passed away.”

“His courage, his strength and his story have touched many lives, including those of our caregivers, who tirelessly fought with him and for him every step of the way,” the statement continued. “We are grieving with his family and with our community.”

His wife Jessica, who was also shot, said in a statement to KDBC-TV, “Last night at 11:22 we lost a warrior, but gained an angel. He fought long and hard, with the help of all his troops he won many battles but lost the war.”

“We would like to ask the community to continue to lift Memo in prayer and allow us to grief this tremendous loss, we are asking for privacy during this time,” Garcia said.

Memo and his wife Jessica had been in the Walmart parking lot fundraising for their daughter’s football team.

Credit: @CAMERONTYGETT / TWITTER

The family had set up a lemonade stand in the Walmart parking lot to help raise money for their daughter’s local soccer team. Memo was shot twice in the leg and once in the back as he protected his two children, who were also there. Jessica had been shot three times in both legs; the couple’s children were not struck.

One week after the shooting, Jessica Garcia rose from her wheelchair to deliver an emotional speech from across from the courthouse where the suspected attacker was being kept and decrying the racism that apparently motivated the attack.

“Racism is something I always wanted to think didn’t exist. Obviously, it does,” she said.

The shooter was an alleged white nationalist who specifically targeted the Latino community of El Paso.

The FBI is investigating the shooting as an act of domestic terrorism and a possible hate crime. The shooting has been described as the deadliest attack on Latinos in modern American history.

According to CNN, the shooter drove more than 10 hours to the store, located near the Mexican border, specifically to find and kill Latinos. Officials believe he was the person who wrote a racist, xenophobic manifesto posted online minutes before the massacre, in which he warned about a “Hispanic invasion” of Texas.

A relative of one of the victims told the El Paso Times that the shooter was mainly looking for Hispanic shoppers to gun down. There are reports from white and Black customers that the gunman let them leave, so he could target Latino shoppers.

Memo’s family plans a proper memorial but given the social distancing rules in-place that will be held at a later date.

The family is planning a proper memorial once the Coronavirus pandemic passes.

“When the pandemic and social distancing orders pass we will have a proper memorial and mass, where the community can pay their respects to an El Paso warrior!”

In the meantime, a vigil for Guillermo Garcia has been planned for Monday, with attendees being asked to remain in their vehicles and “demonstrate our love and honor for Memo by turning on our headlights”, instead of candles.

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