Community Gathers at Benefit for Children Killed in Shooting - KiiiTV.com South Texas, Corpus Christi, Coastal Bend

Community Gathers at Benefit for Children Killed in Shooting

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CORPUS CHRISTI (Kiii News) -

People lined up Tuesday to buy hamburgers, chips and drinks at a benefit for the two little girls who were killed in Sunday night's shooting on Cheryl Drive.

The death's of six-year old Nevaeh Oliva and two-year old Lilliana Valent -- who were struck by bullets when one or more suspects opened fire on a home in the 4700 block of Cheryl Drive Sunday night -- rocked the community, prompting fundraising attempts to help the girls' families.

One of those fundraisers was held near the Times Market at Baldwin and Cloyde, where 3News Reporter Anayeli Ruiz went Live with more details.

The hamburger benefit started at 11 a.m., immediately drawing crowds of people who lined to up purchase a burger, some chips and a drink for $6. Some waited for almost an hour as more and more people lined up to get their food.

Event organizers ran out food several times early in the day, but members of the community stepped up to buy more food for them to keep the event going. Everyone that bought food said that the news of the girls affected them deeply.

"I don't know them personally, the two kids, but it hurt me as a mother; a grandmother. It was touching, and terrible," said Patty Montoya, who helped organize the event. "I seen the Facebook post, and it's a tragedy. If it was my daughters or his daughters, I'd be hurt."

Lilliana's great grandparents also showed up at the fundraiser to lend a hand and serve plates, and also to thank the community for all of their support.

"I didn't expect it. Look at all the generosity of Corpus Christi. It's so overwhelming," said Irma Rodriguez, Lilliana's great grandmother. "People are walking up and giving me $20, $30, $40; the donation broke up, but they are coming in groups. They are handing out checks."

The success of the event says a lot about the power of social media -- it all started with a simple Facebook post; but perhaps the event's success says even more about the strength of the Corpus Christi community when everyone comes together.