UVALDE, Texas (Border Report) — A popular park and fountain in the center of town that is the site of monthly community gatherings has now been transformed into a memorial for the victims of the school shooting.

This park is where this town of 16,000 gathers for some late night shopping, food, live music and art every second Friday of the month for what is called Four Square Fridays.

It’s a place where we have gatherings like Four-Square Fridays where we all come out and enjoy good food and music,” Arianna Diaz, 18, said.

“We gathered here once a month … as a town, small businesses here. You come and listen to music. You eat food. You see your fellow community members gathered here so it’s such a tragic event. This should have never happened,” Jaime Cruz, 18, said.

Uvalde High School seniors Arianna Diaz and Jaime Cruz on May 26, 2022, lay roses at the base of 21 crosses that were put in the town’s square and fountain park in honor of the victim’s of the deadly school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. (Sandra Sanchez/Border Report)

On Thursday afternoon, they returned to the park. But this time it wasn’t for fun.

They brought pink and white roses and laid them at the base of each of the three-root wooden crosses, each honoring a victim of Tuesday’s deadly mass shooting at Robb Elementary School, no more than a mile and a half away.

Teddy bears, flowers in glasses and roses are put at the base of 21 crosses erected May 26, 2022, in the downtown fountain park in Uvalde, Texas. Teens Arianna Diaz and Jaime Cruz laid roses for each on May 26, 2022. (Sandra Sanchez/Border Report Photos)

Diaz cried as she laid a rose on the cross bearing the name Alexandria Rubio, the cousin of their best friend, who was killed Tuesday in what is the nation’s deadliest school shooting in over a decade.

“It’s sad that we had to lay those flowers for every one of those 19 kids and two teachers. It’s unbelievable,” Cruz said.

Sandra Sanchez can be reached at Ssanchez@borderreport.com