"Permian Basin Strong": Students pay tribute to Odessa spree shooting victim
On Friday, students at Lubbock-Cooper high school welcomed the youngest survivor of the Odessa spree shooting back to the city with open arms.
It was the first time Anderson Davis and her family had returned to the city, since she was airlifted to University Medical Center for an emergency surgery 3 moths ago.
"I'm very thankful for these moments, because this is what's going to make it okay to tell that story," Kelby Davis, her mother, said.
Shrapnel struck the 17-month-old while she was in a car with her mother, and her twin brother Rhett.
Anderson is the youngest victim in the shooting spree that killed eight people on Aug. 31.
"The story doesn't just end with something evil that happened to them. It hasn't ended," Davis said. "This is a story that they will continue to see God's grace and the love of people around them and they're going to get to carry that through their whole lives."
Students with the Spanish club, wanted to help.
"We felt from the bottom of our hearts, we had to do something for them, for their family," Rachel Kurhnle, the president of the club, said.
The club put together a coin drive, and raised $507. They chose to buy 2 matching recliners and teddy bears for the now 20-month-old twins, plus a plaque, plus money to spare.
The Davis family, touched by the students' efforts, made the 2 hour drive to come meet them in person.
"I just really want these students to realize what might be small to some is not small to us, what might seem like just a coin drive to some, is really big to our family. And more than just the money and the gifts, it's really just the love that they're showing," Davis said.
"I think it'll just help me to remember where my roots are and just to know that everyone needs help at one point, it's a really good feeling to take with you," Alyzia Vallejo said.
"These are the moments that just bring me so much hope and make me so thankful that I'm a West Texan and probably always will be, and excited to raise my kid here," Davis added.
The healing process was slow for baby Anderson, but now she's mostly back to her old ways, playing with her brother and enjoying life.