The father of Robb Elementary School massacre victim Amerie Jo Garza was told his daughter was dead by the girl’s best friend, he said on CNN Wednesday night.
Angel Garza recounted how he was responding to the school as a medical aide to assist in the mass shooting’s aftermath and saw a little girl “covered in blood head to toe.”
“I thought she was injured, I asked her what was wrong and she said she’s OK,” Garza told Anderson Cooper. “She was hysterical, saying that they shot her best friend, that they killed her best friend, she’s not breathing and she was trying to call the cops.
“And I asked the little girl the name and she told me, she said Amerie,” said Garza, who started weeping on air. “She was so sweet … she was the sweetest little girl who did nothing wrong. She listened to her mom and dad, she always brushed her teeth, she was creative, she made things for us, she never got in trouble in school.”
“I just want to know what she did to be a victim,” said Garza, fighting through tears.
Amerie was one of 21 people, including 19 young students senselessly killed by alleged gunman Salvatore Ramos. The school shooting is one of the worst in American history.
Amerie was a big sister to a little brother who asked for her every morning when he’d wake up, Garza said.
“We informed him that his sister is with God and that she will no longer be with us and of course he just cried,” Garza told Cooper when the host asked if his son knew.
The young girl turned 10 two weeks ago, Garza said, and for her birthday she received her first cellphone.
“She’s been wanting a phone for so long and we finally got it for her,” Garza said.
Amerie tried to use that phone to call police for help during the shooting, Garza said on air.
“She was just trying to call authorities and I guess he just shot her. How do you look at this girl and shoot her,” said Garza, holding up a photo of his daughter and calling her his baby.
“I just want people to know that she died trying to save her classmates,” Garza said at the end of the CNN interview. “She just wanted to save everyone.”
Amerie’s mother, Kimberly Garcia, posted on Facebook that she will never comprehend her loss.
“Mommy loves you, mommy can’t sleep without you Mommy needs you, Amerie I can’t do this life without you. How am I supposed to live life without you? I will never understand. I love you and I’ll never be the same, ever again,” she wrote.