Uvalde pediatrician fights for gun legislation changes

HR 1808, which would ban assault-style weapons for civilians, passed in the House of Representatives in July

UVALDE, Texas – For Uvalde’s only pediatrician, Dr. Roy Guerrero, his desire to become a doctor started early in life on his parent’s ranch.

“If any little animal or goat was sick, I would try to mend them and, you know, fix broken legs,” Dr. Guerrero said.

He showed KSAT 12 News around his clinic, which is attached to his home.

For Guerrero, the decision to work with children in the town he grew up in was easy.

“You nurture this kid, you know, from from the five-day visit ‘til, you know, they leave you at 22 to go to go to college or, you know, or graduate high school,” Guerrero said.

The bonds he forms with families, and first-time moms, are special.

“The relationship is much different than if I worked in a bigger town like San Antonio because of how small the community is here,” he explained.

On May 24, Guerrero lost some of those patients. It’s a day that torments him.

“Everything that’s happened to me, my community, to the parents of the deceased or the parents of any victim, I think to everyone, it’s still like a dream, right?” Guerrero said. “Not even a dream, a nightmare that you can’t wake up from.”

He testified in front of Congress weeks later and has returned to our nation’s capital several times since, as recently as two weeks ago.

Guerrero played audio from a classroom across the hall from the gunman, hoping to break through to lawmakers.

“This is the shrill screaming of kids trying to get out while their classmates are being murdered,” he told them.

KSAT 12 News has chosen not to play or share the audio out of respect for the survivors and their families.

Guerrero says this is his duty, fighting for change to gun laws to honor his Hippocratic Oath to save children.

“It’s a part of my job, and I think it’s part of your job as a physician to -- no matter who you are and where you are -- to step up and protect your patients,” he said.

He challenged the elected officials he spoke in front of on Dec. 15.

“Children require lollipops for convincing. As their protectors, we just need to look at the horrific tragedies that repeat in our country time and time again,” Guerrero said. “No convincing required.”

Right now, H.R. 1808, the Assault Weapons Ban of 2022, has passed in the House.

The bill was read twice in the Senate and then referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

Find more Uvalde coverage from KSAT here

About the Authors:

Leigh Waldman is a news 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.