MIDLAND/ODESSA (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — Mail carrier Mary Granados was alone in her U.S. Postal Service truck when she was shot and killed by a gunman who hijacked the white vehicle amid his frenzy of violence in West Texas Saturday afternoon.
Granados, 29, was among seven people between the ages of 15 and 57 killed Aug. 31. Over 20 more were injured, including a toddler.
US Postal Service officials said in a statement Sunday that they were “shocked and saddened” by the events, but were “especially grieving the loss of our postal family member.”
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said the 17-month-old girl is recovering but will undergo surgery on Monday to remove shrapnel from her chest. She also suffered injuries to her face. Abbott says the mother texted:
Thank you all for praying. This is all of our worst nightmare, but thank God she’s alive and relatively well. Toddlers are funny because they can get shot, but still want to run around and play… We are thanking God for that. Her mouth is pretty bad but will heal and can be fixed.
Daniel Munoz, 28, who also was injured, recalled the harrowing tale of coming into the path of the gunman — identified as 36-year-old Seth Ator from Ector County — who was later killed by officers. Munoz was in his car on the way to meet a friend for a drink, when he yielded to a car coming off Interstate 20. He immediately noticed what he feared to be a barrel of a rifle in the hands of Ator.
“This is my street instincts: When a car is approaching you and you see a gun of any type, just get down,” Munoz, who moved from San Diego about a year ago to work in oil country, told The Associated Press. “Luckily I got down. … Sure enough, I hear the shots go off. He let off at least three shots on me.”
He’s not exactly clear, but it appears one shot hit the engine, another struck the driver’s side window and a third a rear window. Some shattered glass punctured his left shoulder, causing him to bleed a lot and go to a nearby hospital. He said he’s physically OK but bewildered by the experience.
“I’m just trying to turn the corner and I got shot — I’m getting shot at?” Munoz said. “What’s the world coming to? For real? I’m just over here minding my own business, getting my own gas.”
This shooting occurred just shy of one month since 22 people were killed at an El Paso Walmart, located about 285 miles west of Odessa.
The Postal Service has since released the following statement:
The Postal Service is shocked and saddened by the events that occurred yesterday in the Midland-Odessa area. We are especially grieving the loss of our postal family member, letter carrier Mary Granados, age 29, and we continue to keep her family in our thoughts. The United States Postal Inspection Service, the law enforcement arm of the Postal Service, is working closely with our law enforcement partners to assist with the investigation.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)