The tragedy now overshadows Uvalde, a small town with a growing population

The small town of Uvalde, Texas is a place where Friday night football rules, and its fame is as the hometown of actor Matthew McConaughey.

This is not a place where tight-knit locals expect to face a school shooting that left at least 14 children and a teacher dead.

News of the shooting, which began late Tuesday morning, has the community searching for answers, said Marc Duvoisin, editor of the nearby newspaper. San Antonio Express-News.

“I could see a local real estate agent or the head of the refrigerator repair business sharing information about a sibling or relatives who work at school or work at the hospital,” he said.

“It’s a place where interconnections like this are thick, and there was tremendous anxiety. And prayers were shared on social media as people who knew each other or had connections came together.”

He said local police still seemed in shock.

Uvalde has experienced strong population growth over the past two years, Duvoisin said.

“A lot of people came from other states, drawn by the scenic beauty and small-town vibe of Uvalde, and hardly expected to face something like this at their local school,” he said. he declares.

Uvalde has a population of about 15,000 people, more than 80% of whom identify as Hispanic or Latino, according to Data of the United States Census Bureau. And about 1 in 5 people live below the poverty line.

The town is about 80 miles from San Antonio and about 70 miles from the US-Mexico border and is just a regular and generally peaceful town, local reporter Brian Kirkpatrick said.

“Uvalde is one of those quintessential Texas towns that largely revolves around Friday night football. There’s a lot of civic pride for your Friday night football games,” he said. “These types of towns are very close-knit because of that, and that includes their schools — they’re a central part of the community.”

“So when something happens to a school, it really affects everyone here because a lot of people who grow up here, you know, live and die here. So it’s that kind of connected community.”

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