El Paso Walmart shooting anniversary of the fatal attack on Sunday, Aug 3 during the pandemic.
Many people are taking to social media to consider on where they were when the shooting happened or how the victims are being remembered, one year ago.
To honor the 23 lives lost in Walmart, the city of El Paso is offering a series of events from July 30 to Aug 3 in wake of the event’s anniversary.
The shooting was carried out by a man who was targeting Mexicans. Patrick Crusius, the alleged shooter, faces state capital murder charges, and federal hate crime and gun case that could bring a death sentence.
“The mass shooting on August 3, 2019, forever changed the City of El Paso,” The City of El Paso statement posted to social media. “Several special virtual events are planned to honor and remember the victims one year later. The community can reflect on that day and remember the lives lost by participating in various events.”
Guillermo “Memo” Garcia died in April, nine months after he was shot in the Walmart parking lot while fundraising for his daughter’s soccer team. He was the 23rd shooting victim. Masked mourners gathered in a hospital parking lot to mark his death.
El Paso citizens describe the friendliness of the city, which has one of the lowest crime rates in the U.S. Many people have rootstocks in both the U.S. and Mexico crossing the border. Several of those killed at Walmart had come from Mexico to shop.
El Paso Walmart shooting anniversary during the pandemic
Shooting in El Paso, a largely Hispanic city of 700,000, have taken on a new look among the coronavirus pandemic: parks lit with torches that people can walk or drive through; private tours for victims’ families at a museum exhibit of items preserved from a makeshift memorial; and residents being asked to show support with online posts.
The service will be live-streamed. However, the members of the public can drive through the park as music plays and lanterns float on the lake.
Community members can reflect on the fatal shooting by using the following social media hashtags: ATimetoRemember and ElPasoStrong.
“It shook me to remind me that we’re in the middle of a healing process that we’re now being overwhelmed by COVID,” El Paso County Judge, Ricardo Samaniego, said.
Futurities of the incident
“That was always his priority, was his family, and he always put others first. That showed that day,” Melendez said.
Dr. Jose Burgos, now helps coordinate care for COVID-19 patients, said his alarm that Hispanics were targeted lingers.
“The feeling is definitely still there, you’re more aware of the fact that you may be looked at a bit differently, that you might be targeted. That’s still there,” he said.
The other targeted, Patrick Crusius, confessed to driving to El Paso from his home near Dallas to target Mexicans, and just before the attack posted a racist screed online. Crusius, 22, faces state capital murder charges, and federal hate crime and gun case that could bring a death sentence if he’s convicted.
On the morning of the shooting, Melendez’s grandparents took their granddaughter, Kaitlyn, to Walmart to get new clothes and a basketball. They were at the checkout when the gunman fired, and David Johnson pushed his wife and granddaughter under the conveyor belt.
This summer, Kaitlyn was going to go to a camp for kids with post-traumatic stress disorder when she, her parents, and her 3-year-old sister tested positive for COVID-19. They have recovered in about a week and no one had severe symptoms.