UVALDE, Texas (AP) – A girl made others smile. Another was a creative kid who loved mermaids, unicorns and the color purple. A third loved to play softball and worked on her batting swing in her front yard.
The families of Nevaeh Bravo, Maranda Mathis and Eliahna Torres held funerals for them on Thursday, part of more than two weeks of mourning for the 19 children and two teachers who were the victims a mass shooting on May 24 at Robb Primary School in Uvalde.
A cousin told the Washington Post that the 10-year-old “put a smile on everyone’s face” and described her death as “a nightmare we can’t wake up from.”
She and another 10-year-old who was killed, Jailah Silguero, were friends and an aunt described them as “Our Angels” in a Facebook post. A cousin told USA Today that the two girls cared for, loved and supported their siblings. Both families had their funerals at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, with Jailah’s funeral scheduled for Friday.
The aunt noticed that Nevaeh’s first name is sky backwards.
Her family said in an obituary on the funeral home’s website that the 11-year-old “had a huge loving heart” and described her as sweet, smart and “a shy tom boy” who enjoyed spending time outdoors. She had a great imagination and often expressed her love for unicorns and mermaids, especially when they were her favorite color, purple, the family said.
Her mother told the New York Times that while Maranda was shy when she started school, she opened up and made friends over the course of the year. She was a creative girl who loved music, ran on school days, swam in the river and showed her mother stones she found.
A friend of Maranda’s mother told The Washington Post that she was “funny,” “spunky,” and “very smart.”
The 10-year-old had “the most beautiful smile that could brighten your soul,” her family said in their obituary on the funeral home’s website.
“She was a loving and compassionate person who loved to be silly,” the obituary reads. “Eliahna was a master of jokes and loved to make people laugh.”
Her family said she would spend hours watching TikTok videos, but she had found a new passion – softball. She had hoped to make an all-star roster.
She worked to improve her hitting and practiced her shot with a ball her grandfather hung in her front yard outside the home she shared with her mother, aunt and grandparents, the New York Times reported. When asked to go to bed, she responded with “One more”.
Her family jokingly called her “Enfermerita” or the little wet nurse. Her grandfather told The Times that after he underwent heart surgery a few years ago, Eliahna would accompany him on his doctor-ordered walks and help him pick up pecans that fell from the trees that shaded their neighborhood. She made sure her grandparents took her medication.
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