Husband of teacher killed in Texas school shooting 'dies of broken heart'

ITV News Correspondent Geraint Vincent has the latest on the Texas school shooting

The husband of a teacher killed in the Uvalde school shooting has died from a heart attack two days after the massacre, a family member has said.

Irma Garcia, her co-teacher Eva Mireles and 19 pupils were shot dead by an 18-year-old gunman in their fourth-grade classroom on Tuesday.

Joe Garcia, 50, died just hours after leaving flowers at his wife's memorial on Thursday morning. On his return home, he “pretty much just fell over”, his nephew John Martinez told The New York Times.

The childhood sweethearts had four children and had been married for 25 years.

“Stuff like this should not be happening in schools,” Mr Martinez told The Detroit Free Press.

Ms Garcia's cousin, Debra Austin, said she was "devastated" to report Irma's husband's death "as a result of a medical emergency".

"Please keep our family in your thoughts and prayers. I truly believe Joe died of a broken heart and losing the love of his life of more than 25 years was too much to bear," she wrote on the GoFundMe page set up by the family which has raised over $1m."

Ms Austin said Ms Garcia "would literally do anything for anybody... no questions asked".

"She loved her classroom kids and died trying to protect them."

The couple’s oldest child, Cristian, is a Marine while their other son, Jose, attends Texas State University. Their eldest daughter, Lyliana, is a high school sophomore, and her younger sister is in the seventh grade.

Ms Garcia had been teaching for 23 years at Robb elementary and was previously named the school’s teacher of the year.

21 people, including 19 children and two teachers, were killed in the school shooting.

The tragedy has once again opened the debate into gun ownership in the US. Questions have been asked about the time it took police to reach the scene and confront the gunman, and the apparent failure to lock a school door he entered.The suspect, Salvador Ramos, was inside the classroom for more than an hour before he was killed in a shootout with police, authorities said.

Texas Department of Public Safety spokesperson Travis Considine said Ramos entered Robb Elementary School and began his rampage at 11.40am on Tuesday.

ITV News Correspondent Robert Moore on the questions surrounding the police response, and it raises the question about arming teachers

A Border Patrol tactical unit began trying to get inside an hour later, and at 12.58pm, radio chatter noted he was dead.

The amount of time that elapsed has stirred anger and questions among family members, who demanded to know why they did not storm the place and put a stop to the rampage more quickly.

Gun control in the US is largely drawn along political lines. Among the response muted in the wake of the tragedy by Republicans, who have traditionally opposed gun control, is arming teachers. But Democrats have adamantly opposed arming teachers, and they say money for addition security in schools is not enough.