Heartbreaking moment parents line up to give DNA swabs to help cops identify victims of Texas elementary school massacre that saw 19 children shot dead
- Parents lined up to give DNA swabs to help authorities identify the child victims after the Texas elementary school massacre that killed 19 students
- The child victims are: Makenna Elrod, Uziyah Garcia, nine, and Xavier Lopez, 10, Amerie Jo Garza, Eliahana Torres
- Two teachers Eva Mireles and Irma Garcia have also been confirmed dead
- Salvador Ramos, 18, equipped with a handgun and possibly a rifle, entered the Robb Elementary School and opened fire around 11.30am
- He was killed following a subsequent shootout with police
- Family friends said they remember the teen having a temper growing up, but shouldn’t believe he could be so violent
Grim footage showed parents lining up to give DNA swabs to help identify the remains of 19 students massacred by a gunman at a Texas elementary school.
The family members were filmed lining up outside an auditorium close to Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, Tuesday evening before darkness fell.
Sobs could be heard throughout the evening as at least five family members were told their children had been killed. Two teachers have also been confirmed as victims of the grisly incident.
Parents had to wait outside the SSGT Willie de Leon Civic Center to provide DNA swabs to help authorities identify remains of children who may be unrecognizable after the tragedy.
Parents also desperately waited for their children at designated meeting spots, hoping their loved ones would reappear. As the night wore on, the parking lot of cars slowly began to peel away.
Among the lost children are Makenna Elrod, Uziyah Garcia, nine, and Xavier Lopez, 10, Amerie Jo Garza, Eliahana Torres, Ellie Garcia, as well as fourth-grade teacher Eva Mireles and another teacher Irma Garcia.
Mireles, a fourth grade teacher, was identified by her family as being one of the staff members shot dead. She had worked in education for 17 years.
Her husband Ruben Ruiz, a veteran detective and SWAT team member currently serving as a police officer with the school district, held regular active shooter drills for the schools – most recently at the end of March.
Salvador Ramos, 18, equipped with a handgun and possibly a rifle, entered the Robb Elementary School and opened fire around 11.30am.
Two parents, who claimed to be family friends of Ramos, said the teen was serious and had a temper and oftentimes talked back to her mother while growing up, The New York Times reported. However, both parents – who were not identified – said they were shocked to learned he could do something so violent.
Desperate families gather outside of SSGT Willie de Leon Civic Center (pictured) to give DNA swabs to help authorities identify remains of children who may be unrecognizable after the tragedy
Ramos, who was born in North Dakota but lived in Uvalde, had been a student at Uvalde High School, Governor Gregg Abbott said. One of his friends at high school said he was teased about his clothes and his family’s financial situation.
He also worked at Wendy’s, where staff remembered him as quiet.
‘You know how my guys talk to each other and are friendly? He wasn’t like that. No one really knew him,’ the night manager Adrian Mendes told The New York Times.
‘He felt like the quiet type, the one who doesn’t say much. He didn’t really socialize with the other employees,’ Mendes told CNN. ‘He just worked, got paid, and came in to get his check.’
‘He shot and killed – horrifically and incomprehensibly – 14 students and killed a teacher,’ Abbott said at a press briefing. The death toll was later revised to 19 children.
‘There are families that are in mourning right now. And the state of Texas is in mourning with them.’
It was the deadliest such incident since 14 high school students and three adult staff were killed in Parkland, Florida in 2018 – and the worst at an elementary school since the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting in Connecticut, in which 20 children and six staff were killed.
‘The idea that an 18-year-old kid can walk into a gun store and buy two assault weapons is just wrong,’ said Joe Biden, addressing the country from the White House on Tuesday night.
‘As a nation, we have to ask: When in God’s name will we stand up to the gun lobby?’
He added: ‘Why are we willing to live with this carnage? Why do we keep on letting this happen? Where in God’s name is our backbone?’
Makenna Elrod (left) and Uziyah Garcia, nine, have been confirmed dead after the shooting
Xavier Lopez, 10, (left) and Amerie Jo Garza (right) was also killed at the school shooting on Tuesday
Eliahana Torres, 10, was also confirmed dead on Facebook
Steven Garcia and Jennifer Lugo confirmed their daughter, Ellie, was killed in Tuesday’s massacre after she had been missing for several hours
Eva Mireles and Irma Garcia were shot and killed by Salvador Ramos on Tuesday while at the school where they taught in Uvalde
Four days prior to Tuesday’s shooting, Ramos reportedly sent his friend a picture of the AR and a backpack full of 5.56 rounds.
‘[He had] probably like seven [magazines],’ he said. “I was like: “Bro, why do you have this?” and he was like: “Don’t worry about it,”‘ the unidentified friend said.
The school shooter – who originates from North Dakota and had recently moved to Texas – had reportedly bought two rifles on his 18th birthday, which was days ago, the Daily Beast reported.
Under a new Texan law passed in September, those aged 18-21 could buy guns if they had a protective order, because they were at risk of family violence, stalking, prostitution or sex trafficking.
The law also removed the requirement for a permit for a handgun. Rifles were already permitted in Texas without licenses.
Ramos also told his friend that he ‘looked very different now.’
‘You wouldn’t recognize me,’ he messaged less than a week ago.
Ramos’s social media was full of photos of his new guns, which he bought on his 18th birthday, state senator Roland Gutierrez said.
Ramos also messaged a Los Angeles-based woman on May 12 on Instagram, tagging her in a photo of the guns.
‘You gonna repost my gun pics,’ @sal8dor_ direct messaged her.
Salvador Ramos, 18, murdered 21 people on Tuesday at Robb Elementary School. Family friends said they remember him having a temper growing up, but couldn’t believe he could be so violent
One video at the scene appears to show the suspected gunman, named by Governor Greg Abbott as Salvador Ramos, approach the school while what sounds like gunfire is going off in the background
‘what your guns gotta do with me,’ she replied on Friday.
‘Just wanted to tag you,’ he said back.
Then at 5:43am on Tuesday, @salv8dor_ messaged her and said: ‘I’m about to’.
The girl asked ‘about to what’ to which he answered: ‘I’ll tell you before 11.’
He said he’d text her in an hour and urged her to respond.
‘I got a lil secret I wanna tell u,’ he messaged with a smiley face emoji covering its mouth.
‘Be grateful I tagged you,’ he wrote.
She replied: ‘No it’s just scary,’ adding: ‘I barely know you and you tag me in a picture with some guns?’
His last message at 9:16am on Tuesday was ‘Ima air out.’
Ramos was shot and killed by law enforcement at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, after he had murdered 21 people.
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