Hundreds across the nation offered a massive outpouring of support for an El Paso man who, having no family to join him, invited the public to attend the funeral of his wife, a victim of this month’s mass shooting.
Antonio Basco’s invitation to attend services for his wife of 22 years, Margie Reckard, quickly went viral earlier this week, prompting people across the country to take action. A flood of donations has since poured into a GoFundMe set up to help with expenses, hundreds of flowers have been donated to Basco and hundreds have RSVP’d to attend the funeral, which will be held this Friday.
As of 11 p.m. Thursday evening, the GoFundMe for Basco had raised more than $24,000. Its original goal was $1,000. The GoFundMe was set up by a local journalist who said in the fundraiser’s description they were “just trying to help.”
Harrison Johnson, the director of Perches Funeral Homes which is arranging Rekard’s services, told local ABC affiliate KVIA that he expects to have between 400 and 500 flower arrangements to set up on Friday.
“I’ve been doing this for over 30 years and I have seen very high profile people who have not had this much response,” Johnson told KVIA. “He feels like he is going to be alone and I keep assuring him he’s not going to be alone, we’re all going to be here.”
On top of the numerous flowers and monetary donations, hundreds have posted online saying that they will drive out to attend the funeral on Friday.
“If it wasn’t for all of these people, I don’t know how I would make it,” Basco told CNN in an interview of the widespread support.
Basco told The Associated Press in an interview shortly after the shooting his wife was the “brains of the family.”
“I mean you didn’t even have to be there to talk to her. You could just look at how she was, how she acted, how she presented herself. She was an awesome lady,” he told the outlet.