A teenager who loved to dance. An aspiring border patrol officer. An engineering student works on a medical device to help his sick mother. And his high school football friend and teammate.
Clearer images began to emerge on Sunday of some of the eight people who died after fans at the Astroworld music festival in Houston suddenly rushed to the stage during a performance by rapper Travis Scott.
Authorities said on Sunday that they would not release the names of the dead, but family members and friends shared accounts of loved ones with reporters and via social media. Mary Benton, spokeswoman for the office of the mayor of Houston, Sylvester Turner, said the identities were to be made public on Monday.
The dead were between 14 and 27, according to Houston officials. On Sunday, 13 people remained hospitalized.
City officials said they were in the early stages of investigating the causes of the pandemonium during the sold-out event founded by Scott. About 50,000 people were there.
Experts who have studied crowd influx deaths say they are often the result of density – too many people crammed into a small space. The crowd often runs away from a perceived threat or walks towards something, like an artist, before hitting a barrier.
“LOVED HER MOM”
Franco Patino, 21, was studying for a technology degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Dayton, with a minor in biomechanics of human movement, his father, Julio Patino, said in an interview. He was a member of Alpha Psi Lambda, a fraternity of Hispanic interest, and the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, and worked in an engineering co-op program.
Patino described his son as a charismatic and energetic leader who was active in his community and determined to help people with disabilities.
He said his son was working with a team on a new medical device and wanted to find a way to help his mother walk again after being seriously injured in a car crash in Mexico two years ago.
Through tears, Patino described how his son – who loved weightlifting, football and rugby – used his strength to smash a door and free his mother from the wreckage.
“He loved his mother,” Patino said. “He said everything he did, he was trying to help his mother. The whole goal.”
Julio Patino, of Naperville, Illinois, was in London on business when the phone rang around 3 a.m. He responded and heard his wife, Teresita, cry. She said someone had called from a hospital about their 21-year-old son, Franco, and a doctor would call him soon. About 30 minutes, she called back with the doctor online.
“The doctor told us the news of our son’s death,” Patino said.
Patino said he last spoke with his son around 2 p.m. Friday. Franco told his father that there were not many people at the festival site yet
“Don’t worry, I’m fine,” Patino remembers, telling his son. “I just said, ‘Okay, just be careful.'”
“HUGE HOLE IN OUR LIVES”
Jacob “Jake” Jurinek, 20, was a student at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, where he “pursued his passion for art and the media,” his family said in a statement Sunday. He was just over two weeks away from his 21st birthday.
He was attending the concert with Patino, his friend and former high school football teammate, according to Patino’s father Julio Patino. He was deeply attached to his family and was known as “Big Jake” by his young cousins.
He will be missed by his father, Ron Jurinek, with whom Jake became particularly close following the death of Jake’s mother in 2011.
“For the next decade, Jake and Ron were inseparable – attending White Sox and Blackhawks games, sharing their love of pro wrestling, and spending weekends with extended family and friends in the area. Jake’s favorite, the family cottage in southwest Michigan, ”the family said. noted.
“We are all devastated and we end up with a huge hole in our lives,” added his father, Ron Jurinek, in an emailed statement.
Danish Baig, who identified himself on Facebook as AT&T district manager and appeared to be a staunch fan of the Dallas Cowboys, was among those who died at the concert, his brother Basil Baig said on Facebook.
“He was (a) innocent young soul who always put others before him. He was a hardworking man who loved his family and took care of us. He was there in the blink of an eye for everything. He always had one. solution to everything, ”Basil Baig told ABC News.
A funeral for Danish Baig is scheduled for Sunday in Colleyville in the Dallas-Forth Worth area, his brother said. Messages left for Basil Baig were not returned.
Brianna Rodriguez’s family told People magazine that she was among those who perished at the concert. She was 16, a student at Heights High School and loved to dance, according to the family the magazine spoke to. A message left with the family was not immediately answered.
BORDER AGENT Aspirant
Rudy Pena, from Laredo, Texas, was a student at Laredo College and wanted to be a border patrol agent, his friend Stacey Sarmiento said. She described him as a human person.
“Rudy was a close friend of mine,” she said. “We met in high school. He was an athlete… He brought happiness wherever he went. It was easy to get along with him. It was like positive vibes from him all the time.”
“We all came to have a good time… it was just awful in there,” she added.
Associated Press editors Jamie Stengle and Juan Lozano in Houston contributed to this report. Chase reported from Dover, Delaware. Catalini reported from Trenton, New Jersey.
This story has been updated to correct the name of the Mayor’s spokesperson to Mary Benton, not Barton.
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