Standing Strong With Austin

Last night, we learned about a bomb going off in the Travis Country neighborhood of southwest Austin, seriously injuring two individuals. This was the fourth bombing to occur in Austin over the last 17 days.

The first went off in the Harris Ridge neighborhood of north Austin on March 2, killing Anthony Stephan House. Anthony was a father to his eight-year-old daughter, the president of the homeowner’s association, a talented senior project manager, and a graduate of Texas State University. A second package bomb went off on March 12, killing 17-year-old Draylen Mason in Austin’s East MLK neighborhood. His mother was also critically injured. Draylen was a promising student who was already taking college level courses while also playing bass in the youth orchestra. Later that day, the third bomb went off badly injuring Esperanza Herrera who was caring for her mother.

Our thoughts are with the city of Austin right now, and the families of those impacted. Our prayers go out to all those who have been killed. And we want to wish those who have been injured a speedy recovery.

I’ve been monitoring the situation closely and have had the opportunity to speak with Mayor Steve Adler. I will continue to reach out to those on the ground to offer any resources and assistance they might need.

At a moment like this, I’m thinking of the Austin I know. The city that has welcomed us with open arms over the last year. A strong, united, big-hearted community that’s always there for one another.

I want to also commend the first responders for their professionalism as they work to keep our communities safe. We have the best and brightest in law enforcement working day and night on this case, and we thank them for the work they are doing. We see local authorities teaming up with the ATF and FBI who are taking the lead as the investigation continues. We support them as they do all within their power to bring this terror to an end.

Finally, it’s critical that every single person remains vigilant. That means reporting any suspicious packages or activity to law enforcement by calling 911, following the directions of local authorities on the ground, and saying something if you see something. Those wanting to submit tips should call the local Crime Stoppers tip line at 512–472-TIPS (8477) or the state Crime Stoppers tip line at 1–800–252-TIPS (8477).