Mail carrier Mary Granados was alone in her U.S. Postal Service truck when she was shot and killed by a gunman who hijacked the white vehicle in West Texas amid his frenzy of violence.
Granados, 29, was among seven people between the ages of 15 and 57 killed Saturday. Another 22 were injured, including a toddler.
US Postal Service officials said in a statement Sunday that they were “shocked and saddened” by the events, but were “especially grieving the loss of our postal family member.”
The shooting began with a routine traffic stop where the gunman opened fire on police and then took off in a gold car, shooting randomly for more than 10 miles (16 kilometers). At some point during the turmoil, the gunman abandoned the car and stole the postal vehicle, killing Granados. Police finally used a marked SUV to ram the mail truck outside the Cinergy Movie Theater in Odessa, disabling the vehicle.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said a 17-month-old girl is recovering but faces surgery on Monday to remove shrapnel from her right chest. She also suffered injuries to her face. Abbott says the mother texted: “Her mouth is pretty bad, but will heal and can be fixed. Thankfully it doesn’t seem like her jaw was hit. Just lips, teeth and tongue…We are thanking God for healing her and appreciate continued prayers.”
Daniel Munoz, 28, who also was injured, recalled the harrowing tale of coming into the path of the gunman, who was later killed by officers. Munoz was in his car on the way to meet a friend for a drink, when he yielded to a car coming off Interstate 20. He immediately noticed what he feared to be a barrel of a rifle in the hands of the driver.
“This is my street instincts: When a car is approaching you and you see a gun of any type, just get down,” Munoz, who moved from San Diego about a year ago to work in oil country, told The Associated Press. “Luckily I got down. … Sure enough, I hear the shots go off. He let off at least three shots on me.”
He’s not exactly clear, but it appears one shot hit the engine, another struck the driver’s side window and a third a rear window. Some shattered glass punctured his left shoulder, causing him to bleed a lot and go to a nearby hospital. He said he’s physically OK but bewildered by the experience.
“I’m just trying to turn the corner and I got shot — I’m getting shot at?” Munoz said. “What’s the world coming to? For real? I’m just over here minding my own business, getting my own gas.”