El Paso Survivor: Bank Employee Could Have Saved Lives


Octavio Lizarde, wounded in the El Paso Walmart massacre that also claimed the life of his nephew, says customers seeking shelter were locked out of a bank inside the store as they sought shelter.

(KTSM/NBC News)  Inside a home in El Paso, Texas, surrounded by flowers, hangs a photo of 15-year-old Javier Amir Rodriguez. It serves as a tribute to the teenager who was murdered inside the Cielo Vista Walmart when a gunman opened fire on August 3rd, one of 22 people killed. 

“There’s not one day that he wouldn’t make me laugh,” Octavio Lizarde, Javier’s uncle says.

Lizarde survived the shooting, but there is one scenario that plays over and over in his head. 

“Why didn’t he have the courage, the heart to tell everyone to get in there?” Lizarde says. “Why just you and your employees, I didn’t see everyone who went in there I just saw him.”

Lizarde is talking about the moments before his nephew was shot and killed while standing outside the First Convenience Bank near the front of the store — before bullets tore through his own leg. He said a bank employee inside the Walmart could have saved his nephew’s life. 

“It really made me mad that they didn’t open the door,” Lizarde says.  

Lizarde says he had gone to the First Convenience Bank inside the Walmart to cash a check.

While he waited in line with his nephew, gunfire erupted.

Lizarde says a bank employee pushed past customers and locked himself in a room inside the bank. In an effort to save his nephew, Lizarde tried to get into the room. 

“I tried opening the door handle and thought why won’t they open it,” he says. 

Read more: http://bit.ly/2ZkLDsH

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