The 22 victims of the El Paso Walmart mass shooting were identified by police on Monday, including a mother who was on her way to pick up her teenage daughter from the airport and a lifelong Dallas Cowboys football fan who raised her seven kids alone.
El Paso Police released the names of the people murdered by accused gunman Patrick Crusius, 21, who allegedly opened fire both outside and inside the store with an AK-47-style assault rifle.
Among them was Maria Eugenia Legarrega Rothe, a 58-year-old mother of four who is part of a well-known business family in the Mexican city of Chihuahua.
The homemaker was planning to go to the El Paso airport to pick up her youngest, a 16-year-old girl, returning from a trip to Europe.
On her way, she stopped to do some quick shopping at the Cielo Vista Walmart where she was shot and killed, a family friend told The Washington Post.
Angie Englisbee — an 86-year-old grandmother who raised her seven kids alone after her husband died of a heart attack — was also killed in the shooting. She was remembered by relatives and friends as a joyful woman and sports lover.
One of her sons spoke to her as she was on the check-out line and told her he would call her back later, her daughter Edie Hallberg told local media.
“I hope that maybe someone next to her held her hand, so she wasn’t afraid,” her niece Karla added to KVIA.
Grandparents Leonardo Campos, 41, and Maribel Hernandez, 56, had just dropped off their dog at the groomers before heading to Walmart.
Maribel’s brother, Al Hernandez, told KFOX14 he knew something was wrong when the groomer called to say they never picked up the pup.
“They were always willing to take their shirt off their backs for anyone [who] needed the help… they loved life, going to the casino [and] spending time with their grandbabies,” another relative added.
Baltimore-native Margie Reckard, 63, who had two sons and two daughters, was also killed. Her eldest son, Dean Reckard of Omaha, Nebraska said his mother suffered from Parkinson’s disease.
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Her partner of 22 years, Tony Basco, 61, said Margie took care of him.
“I’ve been lost. I’m like a puppy run away from its momma,” Basco said. “But my wife, she’d say get up off your rear end and grow up. Because now I’ve got to take care of the bills, take care of the cat.”
Two elderly couples were also shot while shopping together.
Juan Velazquez, 77, and his wife Nicholasa Velazquez had just parked their car outside the Walmart when they were hit, KTSM reported.
The couple were able to call their daughter and “were just crying telling us that it hurt,” said their granddaughter Daisy Fuentes to the outlet.
Juan was shot in the stomach and died overnight Monday. Nicholasa, who is in her 60s, was shot in the face and stomach and is still recovering, the family said. The couple have six children and 15 grandchildren.
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Luis Alfonzo Juarez, 90, and his wife of 70-years were hit while picking up groceries, his grand-niece told KTSM in an email. He died but his wife survived.
The family described Juarez as an amazing human being — loving and calm.
Police also identified Maria Flores, 77, and Raul Flores, 77, as victims. They said one German national, Alexander Gerhard Hoffman, 66, was killed.
Among the dead were also Ivan Hilierto Manzano, 46, Gloria Irma Marquez, 61, Jorge Calvillo Garcia, 61, and Teresa Sanchez, 82, who were all from Mexico.
Victims who were identified on Sunday or earlier Monday include David Johnson, 63, a grandad who died while shielding his loved ones; Javier Rodriguez, a 15-year-old boy about to begin his sophomore year of high school; Elsa Mendoza Marquez, 57, who was visiting family in El Paso from Mexico; Arturo Benavides, a 67-year-old Army veteran; and couple Sara Esther Regalado, 66, and Cerros Hernández, 68, who were in El Paso shopping for the day.
Andre Anchondo, 24, and his wife, 25-year-old Jordan Anchondo, who was hit while shielding their 2-month-old son from gunfire, also died.
Authorities believe the gunman who killed these people had posted a 2,300-word anti-immigrant screed on the website 8chan. They said they will seek the death penalty for the shooting suspect and are treating the attack as a “domestic terrorist case.”
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