The husband of one of the two teachers killed in the mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, has died, family members announced on Thursday.
Joe Garcia — whose wife, Irma, was slain in Tuesday’s massacre at Robb Elementary School — died of a heart attack on Thursday morning, their relatives said. The couple had been married 24 years and has four children.
Debra Garcia Austin, Irma Garcia’s cousin, has launched a GoFundMe page to raise money for them.
“Please keep our family in your thoughts and prayers,” Austin wrote in a GoFundMe post. “I truly believe Joe died of a broken heart.”
The couple’s nephew John Martinez tweeted that his uncle “passed away due to grief.”
EXTREMELY heartbreaking and come with deep sorrow to say that my Tia Irma’s husband Joe Garcia has passed away due to grief, i truly am at a loss for words for how we are all feeling, PLEASE PRAY FOR OUR FAMILY, God have mercy on us, this isn’t easy pic.twitter.com/GlUSOutRVV
— john martinez ❤️🔥 (@fuhknjo) May 26, 2022
Martinez told the New York Times that Garcia had visited a memorial for his wife on Thursday morning to drop off flowers, and collapsed when he returned home.
Irma Garcia and Eva Mireles, another teacher, died along with 19 children in the shooting — one of the deadliest in U.S. history.
According to her school bio, Irma Garcia was in her 23rd year of teaching at Robb Elementary and had worked in the same fourth-grade classroom as Mireles for five years.
“She would literally do anything for anybody......no questions asked,” Austin wrote of her cousin. “She loved her classroom kids and died trying to protect them.”