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Husband of Uvalde teacher killed in school shooting has died from heart attack, their family says

Guadalupe "Joe" Garcia, 48, was the husband of Irma Garcia. The couple had four children.

UVALDE, Texas — The husband of a teacher who was killed in the Uvalde school attack has himself passed away due to a heart attack, his family said.

Guadalupe "Joe" Garcia, 48, was the husband of Irma Garcia. She was one of the 21 killed in the Robb Elementary School shooting in Uvalde.

A KENS 5 photographer captured the moment when Garcia visited a cross memorial to the shooting victims Thursday morning. It is unknown how long after that video that he suffered the heart attack. 

Irma taught at the school for 23 years, according to her school profile. In 2019, she was one of 19 San Antonio-area teachers named as a finalist for a Trinity University prize that recognizes excellence in teaching. 

The couple had four children. Joe loved barbecuing with Irma and listening to music. Initially, their nephew said he passed away from "grief."

On Wednesday night, John Martinez, Joe and Irma's nephew, said the family has described this week as a nightmare, and they still hadn't come to terms with losing Irma.

Joe was a family man who would have done anything and everything for his four kids, he said.

Irma's body was found holding another student, protecting a child who was also killed in the shooting, the family said.

Martinez said his Tia Irma died a hero, protecting her students from gunfire. 

At this time, Martinez is asking the community to keep the family in their prayers as they are now grieving the loss of two loved ones. 

The Garcia family says they believe Joe Garcia truly died of a broken heart.  

A GoFundMe for the couple's family has been set up and as of Friday afternoon, already had more than $2.25 million raised.

Credit: Mike Vigil / KENS 5
Guadalupe "Joe" Garcia visits a memorial to the Uvalde shooting victims, including his wife, Irma Garcia.

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