Almost nine months after the mass shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, another victim has died. Guillermo "Memo" Garcia, who was at the Cielo Vista Walmart on Aug. 3, 2019, succumbed to his injuries late Saturday night. He became the 23rd victim of the shooting. His wife Jessica Garcia and their two children survived the shooting.
"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," Jessica, who was shot three times in both legs, told CBS4 in El Paso. "I would like to thank the community for all the love, support, and prayers. On behalf of the Garcia family, we would like to give the community the opportunity to pay their respects, but due to the current circumstances we feel that right now is not the right time."
Jessica asked the community to continue praying for the family. "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," she continued. "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!"
Garcia's death was announced by David Shimp, the Del Sol Medical Center CEO. Garcia was the last patient from the shooting at the hospital. He was shot once in the back and twice in the leg when he tried to protect his 5-year-old son and 11-year-old daughter. The family was at the Walmart that day to sell lemonade to raise funds for the El Paso Fusion soccer team.
"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," Shimp said. "We are grieving with his family and with our community."0comments
In September, the Garcias filed a lawsuit against Walmart, alleging the company did not have enough security in place to prevent the shooting, the Associated Press reported at the time. The lawsuit asked for a restraining order to keep Walmart from destroying evidence. When the company re-opened the store, it renovated the interior of the store, adding a memorial to the victims. Walmart responded to the lawsuit by noting it "preserved" the information and was working with local and federal authorities' investigations.
Earlier this year, 21-year-old Patrick Crusius was charged with 90 counts for the shooting. Authorities said he planned to scare Hispanics into leaving the U.S. as the Walmart was popular with residents on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. Cruisus was allegedly inspired by the Christchurch mosque shootings in New Zealand according to a manifesto that surfaced online.