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Families Mourn 15-Year-Old Boy, Married Couple Killed In El Paso Mass Shooting

EL PASO, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) - A vigil was held Monday evening for the youngest victim of Saturday's mass shooting at an El Paso shopping area. The family of a married couple who died is also taking comfort in their baby who survived.

The new high school football stadium in Horizon City, just outside El Paso, was filled with people attending a vigil for the 22 victims killed in Saturday shooting.

The youngest victim killed, 15-year-old Javier Rodriguez, had just begun his sophomore year at the school. His family released a dove into the air, followed by 21 others -- each symbolizing a life that was lost.

Javier Rodriguez
Javier Rodriguez, 15, died in the El Paso mass shooting. (Credit: Family handout)

"I can't help but feel angry that this young man was robbed of his potential, robbed of his future, and robbed of his life," said Adrian Barrios, who taught Rodriguez in middle school.

Barrios, though, told the crowd anger is not what Javier would have wanted to see in his team.

Friends described him as optimistic, energetic and driven.

"I was asked today what message would he send to us," his soccer coach Juan Ferreira said, holding back tears. "I would say, 'Do your best. Stay focused.'"

Back in El Paso, the family of Andre Anchondo was mourning their own losses.

The 23-year-old and his wife, Jordan, were both killed in the shooting.

Jordan and Andre Anchondo
Jordan (L) and Andre Anchondo were killed in the El Paso mass shooting. (Credit: Family handout)

"Everything on my wall is a treasure," said his father, Gilbert, showing off a wall of his office he had covered with pictures of Andre. In one corner, he kept a poster Andre had made as a young boy when his class was assigned to report on heroes. While many children opted for well-known names, Andre chose his father.

"Superman, Batman, and he decided to make me the hero. And it says here, 'My Dad, a different kind of hero,'" Gilbert said.

Andre's older brother, Tito, would jokingly call his father's office wall "the shrine."

"I'm super embarrassed by it but right now I'm very proud of it because it shows the life of my brother," he said.

Andre had just celebrated his one-year anniversary with his wife, became a step-father to her two children and recently welcomed his first child.

He was at the Walmart in El Paso Saturday, when the shooting began.

His brother said witnesses described Andre's last moments.

"He tried to grab the gun from the guy's hands and upon doing so was struck by a bullet. It pierced through him and also struck his wife," said Tito. "The type of person my brother was, he would have done something like that."

Jordan collapsed on top of their baby, 2-month-old Paul, shielding him in the process from the gunfire. He suffered only broken fingers.

Both sets of grandparents are now caring for the child and cherishing the memories of his father, who was once their baby too.

"He made this for us," Gilbert said, holding a framed handprint alongside a poem that Andre once gave him a gift.

Reading the poem aloud, his voice cracked with emotion.

"The years will pass so quickly. I'll soon be grown like you. All my little fingerprints will surely fade from view," he said.

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