Leila Hernandez, who was named by family members as the 15-year-old high school student who was killed in the Odessa and Midland, Texas mass shooting, was remembered as a good-hearted teenager who recently celebrated her quinceañera. They also say that her brother was injured in the rampage.
A GoFundMe was started to help the Hernandez family. “Please help out our family as we had a tragedy today,” wrote the page organizer, Hernandez Leyva. “Help out for Nathan Hernandez and Leila Hernandez as she passed away and her brother is in the hospital with wounds thank you and god bless you!” You can donate to that page here.
Authorities have not officially confirmed any of the victims’ identifies. They said in a news conference, though, that the still unidentified gunman shot 21 people, killing five of them, in a random rampage that sparked after a traffic stop. Among the wounded: 17-month-old Anderson Davis and three law enforcement officers.
KVUE-TV reported that, according to authorities, “a 15-year-old Odessa High School student was among those killed. Her brother is still in the hospital.”
Here’s what you need to know:
Leila Hernandez Was Described as a ‘Sweet Girl’ With a ‘Big Heart’
One woman wrote a tribute to Leila Hernandez on Facebook, sharing another photo of the teen.
“We are so heartbroken to hear that our dear friend Leila Hernandez, has passed away to be with our Lord Jesus. We still don’t want to believe it,” she wrote. “She was a victim in the tragic event that took place today in Odessa. We are grateful to have been a part of her life, and it hurts our hearts greatly that she is no longer with us on this earth. We had the privilege to have captured her & her families memories in her quince. She wasn’t just a client, she was a good friend of ours. Such a sweet girl, with such a big heart. Beautiful inside and out.❤️ Please keep her and her family in your prayers. Joanna Leyva ?May you rest in peace Leilah. You will be missed.”
Another man commented, “So tragic. Not long ago she was celebrating her (rite) of passage to becoming a beautiful young woman. Rest easy. Prayers for the family.”
Another woman wrote that Leila’s mother taught at Odessa College. “The mother of these sweet kids… taught …at Odessa College. The daughter has passed away and her son has undergone surgery. ❤️ So much love being sent toward this family,” she wrote. “She was my friend and it’s so sad that she is gone please lord watch over her family,” wrote a person who donated to the GoFundMe page.
A Makeup Artist Recalled Doing Leila’s Makeup for Her Quinceañera Only Months Before
The page Makeup by Jeremy shared a statement on Facebook about Leila’s passing.
“I am in total shock and disbelief. I had just did Leila’s makeup and her family’s back in May for her quinceañera. Unfortunately this beautiful sweet soul was victim to the shootings that took place in Odessa today. Prayers to you Joanna Leyva and may God be there for you and your family through this difficult time. ? RIP ??”
The Superintendent of Hernandez’s School District Says the School Community Is ‘Devastated’
Scott Muri, superintendent of the Ector County Independent School District that Hernandez attended, released a statement.
“We are devastated by today’s violence, which claimed the lives of five people including one of our Odessa High School students,” he wrote. “Our lives have been changed forever because of these events. ECISD counselors as well as counselors from the entire region are preparing to offer services to our students, staff and families. We will commit all the resources we have available to help our community heal from this horrific tragedy. The first responders in the Odessa community, including our ECISD Police Officers, have been outstanding and prevented an even greater loss of life.”