Uvalde, TX

Chilling Account of Texas School Shooting Shared by a 10-Year-Old Survivor

Samrat Dutta

“You’re all gonna die”– 10-year-old Samuel Salinas, a survivor of the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School, recalls what the shooter said.

About the incident

As reported in People, In a tragic incident that took place on May 24th, 2022, at the Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, USA, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos fatally shot nineteen students and two teachers. Earlier that day, Ramos evidently shot his grandmother in the forehead, severely wounding her. Then, he headed for the school. Approximately five minutes before entering the premises of Robb Elementary, he started firing shots with his AR-15 style rifle. Then he entered the premises through an unlocked side gate and faced no obstruction in the process. Upon entering the building, he locked himself in a classroom. It is there that the tragedy took place. Inside the classroom, he shot and killed twenty-one people including nineteen students and two teachers. He then remained there for approximately an hour before a member of the United States Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC) fatally shot him.

The involvement of law enforcement officers in the subject matter is being critically reviewed at this point. Certain questions arise as civilians, who were trying to enter the building to help the children, were engaged with the officers of the law as they tried to keep the premises clear of civilians. It is also to be noted that it took approximate 78 minutes for the officers to actually take Ramos down, according to a report in The New York Times, which questions the swiftness in the engagement of the officers. After primarily praising the first responders, Texas governor Greg Abbott called for an investigation regarding the lack of action displayed by the incident commanders. The Texas Department of Public Safety acknowledged that it was an error for law enforcement to delay an assault on Ramos’s position in the student-filled classroom, attributing this to the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District’s police chief’s assessment of the situation as one with a “barricaded subject” instead of an “active shooter”.

Statements of those who endured the gory scape

In an interview with ABC News, Samuel Salinas, who is one of the few survivors of the incident, stated that he recalls Ramos entering the classroom and declaring “You’re all gonna die” before opening fire. According to Salinas, Ramos first took down the two teachers and then started going for the students, most of whom were no more than 10 years of age. He says that Ramos aimed for him as well, as a reason for which he got an injury on his leg. After that point, Salinas states, he “played dead” to survive. We can only imagine what it would have been like for the child as he had to lay motionless amidst a pile of corpses, just to survive. Unfortunately, most of little Samuel’s friends and his other classmates did not make it out alive.

The parents and family members of the victims of the tragic incident broke into tears in front of the media. The people’s hearts wrenched as the mothers of victims Tess Mata and Rojelio Torres describe their grief following the incident. Rojelio’s mother states that he was a very caring little boy and she could not imagine what horrors he must have witnessed before passing away. Kimberly Moto-Rubio, the mother of victim Alexandria Rubio, grieved– “We told her we loved her and would pick her up after school. We had no idea this was goodbye”. Only days after one of the teachers– Irma Garcia, was brutally gunned down, her husband Joe Garcia died of a heart attack. The couple were set to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary but their world was taken away from them.

UPDATE:

As reported by BBC News, thousands of people are marching and demonstrating across the US, demanding stricter gun laws. People are marching with placards with "protect kids, not guns" written on them. President Biden encouraged the protesters to keep demonstrating. He also called on Congress to pass common-sense gun safety legislation.

The take-away from this tragedy (OPINION)

The horrors of school shootings are not new to the USA. However, it doesn’t mean that people can get used to this brutality. No sane person could keep a straight face in the face of such incidents. We are yet again face-to-face with the unimaginable horrors of gun violence and forced to mourn the losses of innocents. The law enforcement and responders are held at the endpoint of harsh questioning but the system remains unshaken. It is about time that would change as the cases don’t seem to end. Let us remind ourselves that there are no “survivors” of this incident. Some lost their lives, some lost their children and some lost their childhood. Being forced to live with fear and trauma, to have nightmares of being gunned down at school, are things that children of no civilised society should have to live with. The world has lost plenty, but just how much more blood is there to be claimed before a change is forced?

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