Amerie Jo Garza, victim of the Uvalde school shooting, was honored with the Girl Scout’s Bronze Cross award

Amerie Jo Garza, a 10-year-old girl with beautiful round cheeks and a sweet smile, loved Play-Doh, pizza and swimming. “She had a generous heart,” the fourth-grader’s grandmother, Berlinda Arreola, recently told The Daily Beast. “She was always there to help someone … She was very smart and excited to build a life for herself.”

Amerie kissed her three-year-old brother goodbye every day when they went to school at Robb Elementary, persons She was reportedly among the first of 19 elementary school students to be fatally shot while trapped with a lone gunman for 78 minutes. She died trying to call 911.

On Monday, the Girl Scouts of the United States of America honored Amerie with a rare national award, the Bronze Cross, in recognition of her heroism..

“I just want people to know how brave she was,” Arreola said Persons. “Unfortunately, it cost her her life, but she tried to save everyone. She was just like that. She tried to save everyone.”

Garza recently celebrated her 10th birthday, reports CNN, and received a cell phone as a gift. Arreola says her granddaughter used this phone to call 911 when the shooting began.

“Instead of grabbing it and breaking it or taking it from her, he shot her,” Arreola told The Daily Beast. “She was sitting right next to her best friend. Her best friend was covered in her blood.”

Speaking to CNN, Amerie’s father, Angel Garza, broke down as he described telling his three-year-old son “that his sister is with God now and she will no longer be with us.”

“She was the cutest girl who didn’t do anything wrong,” Garza said. “I just want to know what she did to be a victim.”

In a statement on her website, Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas described Amerie as bright and outgoing and “proud of the badges she’s earned.” She had just completed her bridging ceremony last week – she had risen from a brownie to a junior within the Scouts.

“Our hearts are broken for their family and friends, along with all those who have lost loved ones during this tragedy,” the statement said. “Dozens of our girls, volunteers and staff have now lost friends or family members and we suffer alongside them.”

At a small ceremony Friday, representatives from Girl Scouts of the United States presented Amerie’s family with a new green sash, to which a bronze medallion was attached, and a framed statement signed by CEO Sofia Chang. It was an emotional event for her grieving grandmother, especially as representatives read the statement aloud. “The words they put in that thing were all Amerie,” Arreola said persons. “It was her.”

“She deserves it.” Amerie Jo Garza, victim of the Uvalde school shooting, was honored with the Girl Scout’s Bronze Cross award


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