LULAC donates nearly half a million dollars to Uvalde shooting victims’ families

Donations were equally distributed among families on Saturday, Aug. 20.

UVALDE, Texas – Nearly three months have passed since the Robb Elementary School tragedy. Still, families of the victims will have some financial relief thanks to a donation from the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC).

LULAC raised nearly half a million dollars in its national campaign “Pray for Texas” to provide aid and support to the victims’ families.

Checks were distributed equally to the families at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 20, at the Southwest Texas Junior College Cafeteria.

Oscar Orona was there with his son.

”My son Noah Orona was in room 112 at Robb Elementary where he suffered a gunshot wound to the back and survived. He spent a little bit over a week at Methodist Children’s Hospital in San Antonio,” Orona said.

Orona said Noah is doing okay after being shot at Robb Elementary on May 24th.

“About a 2-inch-wide hole in his back and then the exit wound was about an 8-inch slither on his upper shoulder what pretty much left a…I call it a ‘canal of destruction,’” Orona said.

While he spent a week in the hospital, his path to recovery is much longer.

“We have 48 occupational therapy sessions between now and December and 46 physical therapy sessions between now and December,” Orona said.

It’s just as much a toll financially as it is physically.

“My wife and I both work, and one of the things we’ve encountered is a lot of the assistance is income-based. So we don’t qualify,” Orona said.

Javier Cazares, Jackie’s father, is thankful for help they received from LULAC.

“Of course, we need to go back to work and I’ve tried…it’s just, with this tragedy it’s different from losing a child or person to a sickness you know, versus how they were taken. It’s that much harder,” Cazares said.

Aside from the monetary help, LULAC also offered support for raising the age to purchase an assault-style rifle from 18 to 21.

Cazares vows he and other families won’t stop fighting until that happens.

“I saw the damage it did to my little girl. And it’s important you know, an 18-year-old doesn’t need that weapon,” Cazares said.

District 19 state senator Roland Gutierrez promised to fight with them.

”Whether you’re Democrat or Republican, we have to bring about common sense goals that are going to keep our children safe, and are going to keep us safe so this never happens again,” Gutierrez said.

Since the school massacre, many have also shown financial support for the families through the Uvalde Together We Rise Fund and the Robb School Memorial Fund.

However, how and when these funds will be distributed has raised some confusion.

To learn more about these funds and how they will be given to the families later this year, click here.

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About the Authors

Leigh Waldman is an investigative reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in 2021. Leigh comes to San Antonio from the Midwest after spending time at a station in Omaha, NE. After two winters there, she knew it was time to come home to Texas. When Leigh is not at work, she enjoys eating, playing with her dogs and spending time with family.

Gavin Nesbitt is a photojournalist and video editor who joined KSAT in September 2021. He has traveled across the great state of Texas to film, conduct interviews and edit many major news stories, including the White Settlement church shooting, Hurricane Hanna, 2020 presidential campaigns, Texas border coverage and the Spurs.

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