Community members at prayer vigil honor 51 migrants found inside trailer on Southwest Side

SAN ANTONIO – There’s sadness and frustration from San Antonio community members, who say they’re getting too used to prayers and vigils following migrants’ deaths.

Several people were united in grief at Pearsall Park on Tuesday night, not too far from where 46 people were found dead in a tractor-trailer on the Southwest Side on Monday evening. Sixteen people were also rushed to the hospital for heat-related illness, officials said.

Five more migrants have died since Monday evening.

A prayer was held for 51 migrants who died and those still fighting for their lives at local hospitals for a tragic plight that’s become a familiar story for the San Antonio community.

“I couldn’t believe it. Here we are again,” said Jessica Azua.

Many can only imagine what the victims felt like as they were suffocating inside the 18-wheeler. Azua said she knows the feeling because she lived it.

“I came here as a 14-year-old in an 18-wheeler, and I passed out from the heat, so this hits home. I was lucky,” she said.

Her heart goes out to the families that are mourning.

“I see them. I hear them, and we are trying our best,” Azua said.

A woman who attended to vigil told KSAT she lives near Quintana Road, where the migrants were found in a tractor-trailer. She said she has seen migrants jump off trains nearby.

The woman said she gives them what she can to make sure they don’t die.

“We see them, but they scattered all around in the field,” she said. “We give them clothes, food, anything we can.

Community members say they’re tired of seeing the same tragic story and nothing being done to prevent this from happening again.


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About the Authors:

Patty Santos joined the KSAT 12 News team in July 2017. She has a proven track record of reporting on hard-hitting news that affects the community.