It has been a few weeks since the devastating Robb Elementary School shooting in Uvalde, Texas. The May 24 tragedy is still fresh in many people's minds, and details about the victims continue to emerge daily.
Recently, people have been tearing up over Annabell Guadalupe Rodriguez and Xavier James Lopez's story.
The two were just ten years old when they met their gruesome deaths, and they had a young and promising romance that was destroyed during the deadly attack.
The Two Will Be Buried Next To Each Other
During her first day in the fourth grade, Annabell Rodriguez came back a starry-eyed romantic. This was revealed by her mother, Monica Gallegos.
The young girl had met a boy she said smelled and dressed "really nice." She was talking about Xavier, her classmate.
Before long, the two were passing notes to each other in class. Their relationship grew from there, and over time, their families started spending time together.
The two kids' moms found out they had begun sending each other "I love you" texts during bedtimes. The two moms joked about it, wondering what two fourth-graders really knew about love.
During spring, Xavier gave Annabell a picture of him on a necklace as a gift, and she wore it to his little league games. Otherwise, she would keep it in her backpack, but she never went anywhere without it.
On the morning their school was attacked, the two young lovebirds had posed for a picture together. The photo was for their honor roll certificates.
Xavier was very proud of his appearance on the honor roll. It was his first time getting the honor.
Annabell's mother joked that her daughter's intelligence had rubbed off on Xavier.
As excited as Xavier was to get home and show off his achievement to his brothers, he and Annabell decided to remain in school and celebrate with their classmates.
An hour after the end of the celebration, during which Martinez, Xavier's mother, had taken a picture, the shooter stormed into their class and shot them along with other students in the class.
Many students from a neighboring class and two teachers were also shot dead during the attack.
A Promising Romance
Although the two kids thought they had met in fourth grade, they had actually met much earlier but were too young to remember this.
They had previously met as toddlers since Annabell's grandfather, and great-grandmother lived in the same trailer park as Xavier.
When Annabell visited her folks, the two kids would play together.
Xavier Was A Loving And Hardworking Boy
Xavier's grandmother said he was a loving, energetic, and hardworking boy. People were also naturally drawn to him.
When he was seven, he learned how to make his grandfather's famous hot salsas. He was also a promising entrepreneur who would sell to his family and friends.
The money he got went into toy purchases for him and his little brothers at the local dollar store.
Xavier also loved dancing, and he sometimes stepped in for his grandfather when he got tired when dancing with grandma during the South Texan Partner dance.
Annabell Was Loved
According to the Gallegos, Annabell was loved and treasured by her family. She stayed with her mother, two sisters, and grandma.
They also stayed with Bailey, their pet chihuahua.
The girl loved to paint her grandma's nails. She also enjoyed braiding her hair.
During summer, she operated a snow cone machine at the family hotdog stand, located along the Nueces and Frio rivers.
The relationship between Xavier and Annabell was not just known to them and their families. At school, their teacher Arnulfo Reyes also knew about the relationship.
The teacher survived the shooting, although she got away with serious injuries. She was incredibly lucky since she was the only person in room 111 who survived the attack.
According to Reyes, Xavier loved Annabell and would write her notes. She made the confession while still in her hospital bed.
She went on to add that thinking about how much the two children loved each other brought a smile to her face.
The Funerals Took Place On Different Days
The two kids had separate funeral ceremonies. Xavier's funeral took place a day before Annabell's.
This was done on purpose by the two families. They had made arrangements to ensure the children would be buried beside each other.
Annabell's cousin, Jackie Cazares, also perished during the shooting. Hopefully, such tragedies will come to an end in the future.