A grieving man who lost his wife in the El Paso mass shooting has invited the public to attend her funeral.
Antonio Basco, 61, was married to Margie Reckard, 63, for 22 years before she was senselessly killed in the August 3 massacre which left 22 innocent people dead and many more injured.
The 61-year-old widower has welcomed anyone to attend his wife’s service this coming Friday, as he has no other family who could attend.
As reported by the New York Post, Margie was born in Baltimore, Maryland, and had two sons and two daughters. Her eldest son, Dean Reckard, said his mum suffered with Parkinson’s disease.
Her funeral will be held at Perches Funeral Home on Friday, August 16, at 4946 Hondo Pass from 5pm until 9pm, according to a post on the funeral home’s Facebook page.
The emotional post invited everyone to attend the Friday service, while also sharing a photo of Antonio surrounded by candles and flowers at a memorial for the victims of the August 3 attack.
The post, which has now been shared almost 10k times, read:
Let’s show him & his Wife some El Paso Love #EPSTRONG
In the wake of the shooting, which took place a few miles from the US-Mexico border, Antonio remembered his late wife as an ‘angel’ whose kindness and selflessness was incomparable.
Speaking to local outlet KFOX-TV, the 61-year-old said:
When I met her she was an angel and she still is. I was supposed to be the strong one but I found out I’m the weak one, and she’s going to be missed a lot.
You didn’t even have to be there to talk to her, you could just look at how she was, how she acted, how she presented herself – she was an awesome lady. You see Margie, more or less was the brains of the family.
When we first met, that feeling came to each one of us, to each other, and we’ve been together ever since. We were gonna live together and die together that was our plan.
Margie’s family will be coming in from out of town but welcomes anyone to grieve with and support them, her daughter-in-law Hilda Nuzzi told local station KTSM, as per New York Post.
We want to thank the people of El Paso because without them, I don’t know what we would have done. Everyone is amazing.
The shooting, which occurred just hours before another mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio, prompted a national debate about gun laws and sparked debate as to whether President Trump’s comments and actions regarding Latinos and immigrants played a role in the shooting.
Before entering the Walmart store in El Paso with an assault-style rifle, it’s believed the gunman posted an anti-immigration manifesto online, which outlined the author’s contempt for Hispanic people and the fear they will take over Texas and turn it into a ‘Democratic stronghold’.
The El Paso shooting is the eighth deadliest mass shooting in US history and has been described as the ‘deadliest day in Texas’ history.’ It was also one of 255 mass shootings to have taken place in the US since the start of this year.
Our thoughts are with the loved ones of those who lost their lives in El Paso and Dayton, and all the other mass shootings in which innocent lives have been taken.
If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677.
A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).