Dozens attend vigil for SAISD bus driver Dolores Martinez

Church helps family, friends with loss

By Charles Gonzalez - Anchor/Reporter

SAN ANTONIO - Alamo United Methodist Church held a prayer vigil Tuesday night for 63-year-old Dolores Martinez. The San Antonio Independent School District bus driver was killed in a crash on Monday on Foster road in front of Wagner High School.

Martinez's bus crossed a median and hit a Judson ISD bus carrying 59 elementary school kids. None of the those children, nor the five on Martinez's SAISD bus were seriously hurt, and neither was the driver of the other bus.

"We thought that we should reach out to the community to provide a place where they could come and pray and to feel closer to God," said Tom Kinkead, the church's communications director. "The first part of our mission statement states that we are a praying family of love and we do our best to live up to that."

With little time to organize the service, church leaders weren't sure what to expect as far as a turnout. Dozens of people filled the sanctuary, including friends, family and fellow bus drivers from both Judson ISD and SAISD.

"I came to pay my respects being that I am a bus driver and I just wanted to pay my respects to the family because it hit so close to home," said Shelly Rivera, a Judson ISD bus driver. "As a bus driver, we're one big family. Even though we don't work for that district, we just feel like it's part of our family."

"It's so beautiful of them doing what they're doing for us," said Janie Medellin, an SAISD bus driver. "For the family and for the SAISD transportation family, like I said, to us she was mom."

"I just want to say thank you for the prayers and support," said Martinez's daughter Andrea Hinojosa, who arrived with over a dozen family members. "We're just shocked that something like this happened because you're not prepared for it and you're not ready."

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