EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – Remembering a Panther. Austin High School Students gathered Thursday morning to honor a former student class of 1980 who was killed in the El Paso Walmart shooting.
“We decided that we needed to do something for the family because we actually saw a thing that said Maribel Hernandez was an Austin Alum and that’s where it hit home for us,” said Dylan Mauldin an Austin High School Senior.
It took months of planning and preparation but Austin High School’s gym was filled with music on Thursday morning.
“Once a panther always a panther,” said Mauldin.
That motto written on a plaque presented to Maribel’s family. Along with a photo, students found in an old yearbook.
“We had to do a little research, we turned FBI mode and we found a picture of her actually when she was here in high school,” said Mauldin.
The photo brought back memories for her brother of their days at Austin High School.
“When I entered freshman year she would actually drive us over here to school,” said Al Hernandez, Maribel’s Brother.
The High Schools band, Mariachi band, as well as a local group, played throughout the memorial service, while Maribel’s family and the student body listened.
“It brings healing also to her grandchildren that were here, the girls and her daughter,” said Al Hernandez.
Al Hernandez, an Austin Alum himself, said Austin High School was and always will be an example in the community.
“We were all one big happy family, we’re talking late 70’s early 80’s and we are very happy to be apart of that history. In a time like this where we’re talking about this tragic event of hate going around I think this school could be some role model,” said Al Hernandez.