WASHINGTON, United States — The husband of a heroic fourth grade teacher who was killed protecting her students during a massacre at a Texas elementary school has died of an apparent heart attack.
A GoFundMe page set up by Debra Austin, who said she was the cousin of teacher Irma Garcia, said that Irma’s husband Joe “has tragically passed away this morning (5/26/2022) as a result of a medical emergency.”
“I truly believe Joe died of a broken heart and losing the love of his life,” she added.
John Martinez, who identified himself as Garcia’s nephew, also tweeted: “EXTREMELY heartbreaking and come with deep sorrow to say that my Tia (aunt) Irma’s husband Joe Garcia has passed away due to grief.”
Ernie Zuniga, a news anchor for local station KABB FOX San Antonio, tweeted that Garcia had died from a heart attack.
The couple, who were married for 24 years, according to the website of the Robb Elementary school, leave behind four children.
Both Irma Garcia and her co-teacher Eva Mireles, who had connected classrooms, died in the mass shooting.
The shooter, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos, was inside the building for about 40 minutes before police entered and fatally shot him.