As the Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC) has been credited with stopping the shooter at Robb Elementary School on Tuesday, the attack has also struck close to home within the Border Patrol family.
The Border Patrol has 140 officers assigned to Uvalde, Texas; because of the town’s proximity to the southern border, a checkpoint is located 5 miles outside of town. “We’re ingrained in these communities and quite often we’re from these communities,” Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz said Wednesday.
Among the two adults and 19 children slain in the mass shooting was Alexandria “Lexi” Rubio, the 10-year-old daughter of Uvalde County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Felix Rubio, who responded to the shooting. She is the niece of former Border Patrol Agent Wally Castillo. Her cousin set up a GoFundMe to help the family.
Ortiz acknowledged that agents on the scene would be dealing with their own trauma from responding to the event, as well. “Nothing prepares you for a scene like what they saw and witnessed,” he said.
Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Chris Magnus went to Uvalde on Thursday to meet with officers. “Humbled and honored to meet with our brave CBP employees and law enforcement partners, national, state and local leaders and numerous community members following the tragic events in Uvalde, Texas,” he tweeted.
Killed in the shooting along with Lexi Rubio were Nevaeh Bravo, Jackie Cazares, Makenna Lee Elrod, Jose Flores Jr., Eliahna ‘Ellie’ Garcia, Amerie Jo Garza, Uziyah Garcia, Xavier Lopez, Jayce Carmelo Luevanos, Tess Mata, Maranda Mathis, Alithia Ramirez, Annabell Rodriguez, Maite Rodriguez, Layla Salazar, Jaliah Nicole Silguero, Eliahana Cruz Torres, Rojelio Torres, and teachers Irma Garcia and Eva Mireles.
GoFundMe has posted a verified list of fundraisers for the families and Uvalde community.