EL PASO, Texas (CBSDFW.COM/AP) – The uncle of a 2-month-old boy named Paul whose parents (Andre and Jordan Anchondo) were killed in the El Paso mass shooting is defending a photo that shows first lady Melania Trump holding the baby while President Donald Trump smiles and gives a thumbs-up gesture.
The photo was released on Twitter by the first lady’s office and drew backlash from some who thought it reflected a lack of empathy and politicized the shootings.
— Melania Trump (@FLOTUS) August 8, 2019
Tito Anchondo is Paul’s uncle and told The Associated Press on Friday that Trump “was just there to give his condolences and he was just being a human being.”
Anchondo previously told NPR that he and his brother were Trump supporters.
Little Paul’s grandfather, Gilbert talked to CBS 11 News about his son Andre.
“Everything on my wall is a treasure,” said Gilbert, showing off a wall of his office he had covered with pictures of Andre.
In one corner, he kept a poster Andre had made as a young boy when his class was assigned to report on heroes. While many children opted for well-known names, Andre chose his father.
“Superman, Batman, and he decided to make me the hero. And it says here, ‘My Dad, a different kind of hero,’ ” Gilbert said.
Tito would jokingly call his father’s office wall “the shrine.”
“I’m super embarrassed by it but right now I’m very proud of it because it shows the life of my brother,” he said.