As is often the case when there is a mass shooting, stories of heroism have emerged from Tuesday’s tragic incident in Uvalde, Texas.
That day now-deceased 18-year-old Salvador Ramos killed 19 young children and two teachers at Robb Elementary School.
As the horrific events were unfolding, off-duty U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officer Jacob Albarado received a text from his wife Trisha, who is a teacher at the school.
He had just sat down for a haircut, The New York Times reported.
“There’s an active shooter,” she texted. “Help,” and then: “I love you.”
The couple’s daughter Jayda, a second grader, was also in the school.
Albarado borrowed a shotgun from the barber and flew out of the shop toward the school.
When the border patrol agent arrived on scene he quickly made a plan with other officers there to begin evacuating students from a wing in the school away from where the gunman was holed up.
“I’m looking for my daughter, but I also know what wing she’s in,” he told the Times, “so I start clearing all the classes in her wing.”
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Two officers provided cover while Albarado and two others began guiding children out of the school.
“They were just all hysterical, of course,” Albarado recounted.
When he finally saw 8-year-old Jayda, the two quickly hugged, but then he kept the evacuation moving along.
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“I did what I was trained to do,” Albarado told the Times.
The New York Post reported that the CBP officer later posted on Facebook that one of his daughter’s teammates and friends had been killed in the shooting.
“I’m so angry, saddened and grateful all at once. Only time will heal their pain and hopefully changes will be made at all schools in the U.S. and teachers will be trained & allowed to carry in order to protect themselves and students,” Albarado wrote.
At a news briefing on Friday, Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw revealed that a teacher at the elementary school had propped open a side door just before the shooter arrived on campus and began his deadly rampage.
Robb Elementary was reportedly supposed to have a single point of entry where those seeking access during school hours would be required to be buzzed in, but the propped-open door negated that protocol.
Local police officers engaged the shooter minutes after he entered the school, prompting him to lock himself in a classroom.
Ultimately, a Border Patrol tactical team forced its way into the room and fatally shot the gunman. So the Border Patrol definitely took some heroic actions that day.
Hats off to Officer Albarado for doing what his husband’s and father’s heart compelled him to do to protect those he loves.