EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — The El Paso community came together to celebrate Paul Anchondo’s first birthday. Sadly, Paul’s parents Andre and Jordan were not there to celebrate, having died shielding the infant during the Cielo Vista Walmart shooting in August.
“Andre and Jordan should be here right now taking care of their baby,” says Gilberto Luis Anchondo, baby Paul’s uncle.
However, baby Paul didn’t celebrate his first birthday alone.
“We came out here to support the little boy who survived the Walmart shooting,” says Jose Martinez, an El Paso Biker.
Paul’s grandfather, Gilbert Anchondo the elder, stood with him as hundreds of El Pasoans drove by to say, “Happy Birthday!”
“It’s out of this world what happened here,” Paul’s grandfather said.
Baby Paul was dressed up as a prince. “The outfit says that he’s a prince but he became the prince of El Paso,” Gilbert says.
Eduardo Prieto, the President of local Muertos MC motorcycle club, says he grew up with the Anchondos. He says the club wanted to do something special for Paul’s birthday.
“This is going to be his first birthday. And it’s unfortunate that his parents are not going to be here for his first birthday. So, we want to give him something to look back and show that not only does he have his family’s support, but the support of the community,” Prieto says.
The family says they were expecting some of the community to drive by, but were never expecting it would be so many.
“We know that the community has been behind him all this time with their support. You know, phone calls and cards. They haven’t forgotten what happened,” Gilbert says.
Many of the parade participants say they will never forget about Paul Anchondo, and plan to continue to show their support in the years to come.
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