El Paso shooting: Man with no family invites community to wife's funeral
The husband of a woman killed in the El Paso shooting has invited the community to attend her funeral as he has no other family in town.
Margie Reckard, 63, was among 22 people killed when a gunman opened fire at a Walmart in El Paso on August 3.
Her husband Antonio Basco extended the open invitation through the funeral home arranging the service.
Basco told KFOX14 they were together for 22 years and their life was "like a fairytale."
"When I met her she was an angel and she still is. I was supposed to be strong, but I found out I'm the weak one.
"We were gonna live together and die together that was our plan," he said.
A Facebook post by Perches Funeral Home showing Basco at his wife's memorial welcomes "anyone to attend" the service on Friday.
The post has been shared more than 10,000 times with more than 1,000 comments from people offering their condolences and keen to show their support.
"Just sent flowers from Los Angeles, CA. I pray Mr Basco knows he and his beloved Margie are in the thoughts of many, including this stranger," posted one Facebook user.
Another posted: "Hello from Baltimore, MD. How would I be able to keep in contact with Mr Basco once the funeral is done? At a time like this and since he has no family, time is more valuable than anything."
Others asked about how they could send cards and flowers and even help financially towards the cost of the funeral. Another Facebook user offered to sing at the service.
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Harrison B Johnson, the funeral home director, told the BBC they will be covering the full cost of the funeral with no charge to Mr Basco after learning about his situation.
"We have had a tremendous outpouring of support after we shared the post. It is our privilege to honour and serve the community to try and make that burden lighter after a tragedy that has devastated our community.
"We just wanted to do our part to help in some small way."
"People have been calling to contribute money but we are not accepting any donations," Mr Johnson added.
"We advise anyone who wishes to make a financial contribution to donate to the charities which are already set up to help the families of those affected by the El Paso shootings."