EL PASO, Texas – The Paso del Norte Community Foundation is accepting monetary donations to support victims and their families following the tragic shooting that occurred in El Paso today.

Paso del Norte Health Foundation and Fundación Paso del Norte para la Salud y Bienestar have joined in the effort. 

The Boards and Staff of the Paso del Norte Community Foundation, Paso del Norte Health Foundation and Fundación Paso del Norte para la Salud y Bienestar said:

“We are deeply saddened by today’s tragic events and want to do all we can to work in solidarity with our community to support the victims and families of this needless violence.   

“To this end, we have established the El Paso Victims Relief Fund in the Paso del Norte Community Foundation to accept monetary donations to support victims and their families. We appreciate your generosity in this moment of profound tragedy and sadness.”

Click here to donate to the the Paso del Norte Community Foundation’s El Paso Victims Relief Fund.

The New York Times is reporting that 20 people were killed in the shooting. The newspaper writes:

EL PASO — A gunman who opened fire at a shopping mall in El Paso on Saturday killed 20 people, according to Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas, and injured 26 others.

The police said that one suspect, a white male in his 20s from Allen, Tex., was in custody, and that the gunman had fired an A.K.-47-style rifle into a crowded Walmart store, sending panicked shoppers fleeing for their lives. Officials said the gunman had surrendered to the police.

Several officials identified the gunman as Patrick Crusius, 21.

The gunfire on Saturday in El Paso began a few minutes before 11 a.m., in a popular commercial district near Cielo Vista Mall with scores of restaurants and stores that are often crowded on the weekends. The Walmart, near Hawkins Boulevard and Gateway Boulevard West a short distance from the mall, was packed at the time.

The El Paso Community Foundation is also accepting donations. 

“El Paso is dealing with a terrible tragedy. On the morning of August 3, a shooter entered several busy retail locations and opened fire,” the foundation stated.

“The El Paso Community Foundation is accepting donations to help the families of those affected. Go to epcf.org/victims to donate. The foundation is waiving all administrative fees and credit card fees associated with this fund.

“We are working with the County of El Paso and the City of El Paso  to help in any way we can. Our Plaza Classic Film Festival is continuing as planned. This is not about ticket sales. This is about healing. Please include the victims and their families in your thoughts and prayers.”

Governor Greg Abbott issued this statement:

“Today, the El Paso community was struck by a heinous and senseless act of violence. Our hearts go out to the victims of this horrific shooting and to the entire community in this time of loss. 

“While no words can provide the solace needed for those impacted by this event, I ask that all Texans join Cecilia and me in offering our prayers for the victims and their families. 

“The state of Texas and the Department of Public Safety are assisting the El Paso Police Department as they conduct their investigation. We have deployed troopers, special agents, Texas Rangers, tactical teams, and aircraft to the scene in a support role. 

“The state of Texas will do everything it can to ensure justice is delivered to the perpetrators of this heinous act.”

Abbott said he would be traveling to El Paso later today

Presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke, a former member of Congress for El Paso, said he was cancelling campaign events in Nevada and California and would be returning home immediately.

El Paso Mayor Dee Margo issued this statement:

“Our community will not be defined by this senseless act of violence. We will be defined by the unity and compassion we show in the wake of this tragedy. Adair and I, with the rest of El Paso will pray for and mourn those who we have lost. We will remember their lives and honor their memories together. United, our community will heal. El Paso is too strong to be broken by this cowardly act.”

El Paso County Judge Ricardo A. Samaniego issued this statement:

“In the recent years, we have witnessed needless tragedy throughout our world….we have mourned with our neighbors as their communities have been ravaged by tragedy and loss. 

“These tragedies have now made it to our doorstep and into our community. El Paso has always been a safe place, deep with pride, strength and love, and as we face this horror, we embrace each other now more than ever. I am in shock over this needless tragedy and loss of life; the pain and sorrow shall not soon pass. We continue to stand together as one community; our resolve to love and care for one another will not waiver.

“We are currently working with local law enforcement, community leaders and non-profits to do all we can during this tragic event. The Paso Del Norte Community Foundation has set up an account to accept monetary donations to support victims and their families. Please click here to donate.”

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas issued this statement:

“My heart is with everyone in El Paso struck by this unspeakable evil. Heidi and I are praying for the victims and their families and grateful for the first responders, local authorities, and law enforcement officers working tirelessly to bring the perpetrator of this depraved act to justice and keep the entire community safe. There are millions of people in Texas and across the country standing behind you.”

U.S. Rep. Veronica Escobar of El Paso issued this statement:

“Today, El Paso is facing the indescribable pain and horror that too many other American communities have had to endure. Our hearts are completely broken by this needless loss of life, especially here in our beautiful home. We mourn for the victims and everyone involved. 

“We are grateful for the courage of our first responders, law enforcement, and El Pasoans who are helping one another. In the very difficult hours and days ahead, our community will provide the strength and comfort the survivors and their families need. And to all of us who have the power to end this horror – I am imploring that we come together, and once and for all address the gun violence epidemic that plagues our nation.”

State Sen. Jose Rodriguez of El Paso issued this statement:

“As an El Paso elected official, resident, and neighbor, my heart breaks today for our community after this horrifying and utterly senseless tragedy. My heart goes out to the families of the victims of this tragedy and for the terror caused in our community, which has already lost so much for such a senseless act. 

“This epidemic will not break us. This act will not define us. We will continue to be strong and make sure that this never happens again, either in El Paso or across the nation. Today we re-pledge ourselves to fighting against gun violence and we will work to ensure the lives lost are not in vain. In the days ahead, our community will come together and provide strength and comfort in one another. We are El Paso strong. Today and everyday.”

State Rep. Cesar Blanco of El Paso issued this statement:

“El Paso is a very strong community. We’re a tight-knit family oriented community. This will not break us. We will continue to be strong just like many cities across our country that deal with these types of tragedies. We will survive this and hopefully as legislators and elected officials that there is the courage and the will to do something more, regarding these types of fatalities and tragedies that are plaguing our nation. 

Texas Democratic Party Chair Gilberto Hinojosa issued this statement:

“Our hearts grieve for the beautiful and vibrant community of El Paso, one of the cornerstones of our great state. With a heavy heart, we say enough is enough. We must stand together to end this senseless violence. We must show that there is a better way than just offering thoughts and prayers. And we must end gun violence before another family loses a loved one or is forced to lay their child to rest. 

“Like with the Sante Fe High School and Sutherland Springs shooting before, the Texas Democratic Party grieves with the victims of this senseless shooting. We promise you, we will re-pledge ourselves and ensure that these tragic losses are not in vain. Today, we recommit ourselves to working even harder to elect candidates who pledge to end gun violence and we’ll oppose those who won’t.”

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick issued this statement:

“Texans are heartbroken over the news of the horrific shooting in El Paso. Please join Jan and I in praying for the city of El Paso, the victims, their families and their friends who have suffered an unspeakable loss today. We are also praying for our first responders, including those in the El Paso Police Department, the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Rangers who courageously deployed to end the attack and who are continuing to investigate to ensure that there is justice for this heinous crime. We remain grateful for their bravery and selflessness.” 

Gyl Switzer, executive director of Texas Gun Sense, issued this statement:

“Our hearts go out to those affected by this shooting in El Paso, Texas and we stand with them in this tragedy and later in trying to understand and prevent such senseless violence.”

Editor’s Note: We will bring more information on this breaking news story as it comes in.

Editor’s Note: The main image accompanying the above news story is provided courtesy of The El Paso Times via AP.