The teachers who were killed after an 18-year-old barged into their classroom, barricaded the doors, and opened fire at them have been identified as Irma Garcia and Eva Mireles. Officials said the teachers were trying to protect their students from the gunman when they were shot. The shooting took place at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, on Tuesday morning.

Also Read: Who was Salvador Rolando Ramos, the 18-year-old Texas elementary school shooter?

Eva Mireles

Mireles was fourth grade teacher who worked for the Uvalde school district for 17 years. She was trained in bilingual and special education

The 44-year-old was married to Ruben Ruiz, a police officer on the school district’s police force, and has a daughter, who took to social media on Wednesday to pay tribute to her mother. 

“Mom, I have no words to describe how I feel right now, tomorrow, and for the rest of my life. I never thought that I would be here writing this type of post for you. Mom, you are a hero. I keep telling myself that this isn’t real. I just want to hear your voice,” Mireles’ daughter, Adalynn Ruiz, wrote. 

“You are so known by many now and I’m so happy that people know your name and that beautiful face of yours and they know what a hero looks like,” she added. 

Lydia Martinez Delgado, Mireles’ aunt, told local media that the deceased was an avid hiker who took pride in teaching students of Latino heritage.

Also Read: 3 deadliest school shootings in Texas

Irma Garcia

Garcia was a married mother of four who loved barbecuing with her husband and listening to music. She taught at Robb Elementary for 23 years. Her relatives said she was a “sweet, kind, loving” teacher who considered her students to be family.

“She passed away with children in her arms trying to protect them. Those weren’t just her students they were her kids as well,” her nephew John Martinez wrote on Twitter.