WICHITA FALLS, TX (KAUZ) - A message of love and compassion. Lauren Landavazo's parents share Lauren's Legacy. Through them and all who love her...her spirit and message live on.
It was a tragedy that shocked Wichita Falls and the world. Two 13 year old girls walking home from school gunned down by a random killer. One of the girls survived her injuries. Lauren Landavazo did not. As Lauren's parent's struggle to process their loss they say their mission is clear - their daughter's life will not have been taken in vain.
Nickles...pennies...cats and purple butterflies...these are all signs that people who knew and love Lauren Landavazo say they are getting from Lauren - from above. Powerful posts and beautiful images are being uploaded daily to the Lauren Landavazo Facebook page - Lauren's Legacy.
"The legacy is what we want to use to remind people of not only what made her special but we have to make change. We have to have more of that in the world and not have her death be in vain. That's what the legacy is about."
Caring...compassionate...helpful...and loving...those are just some of the words used to describe Lauren.
"If you knew her and you were touched by her and she had you in her life you have those same qualities inside - that same compassion and love in you that she had. You have to spread that. That's the only way -- that we're not going to make sense of this but the only good we can feel can come out of this."
Bianka Landavazo wants to make sure this type of tragedy never happens again to any family. She says we have to look at the problem of mental illness.
"I think we need to look at mental illness - it's a problem. Everything that's happened in the last few years I've noticed is mental instability. It happens all the time. They're the ones shooting up people - not just kids...the movie theaters. It's got to stop."
She says the ball keeps getting dropped in the system and something needs to change. She says the laws need to change and that what's she's going to work on.
"I just want it to stop. I really do. Because she's not going to be the last one - I promise. It's just going to keep happening and happening until the people do something. And I know we have a whole army here in this community and we have a spark - we just need it to be a wildfire and I'm confident and I will fight it until I die."
The Landavazo's say they are going to use the donations they have received to start a ministry for both youth and adults and set up a scholarship fund for high school kids trying to make a difference in the world.
You can visit the Lauren's Legacy page on Facebook and there you can find more information on upcoming events and a donation drive they are organizing this week to benefit local animal shelters.
As Lauren's 14th birthday comes up this Friday - one things for certain - the joy that is Lauren's Legacy lives on and will never be forgotten.