Diana Martinez-Gonzalez was an 11th grader from Greenville County, South Carolina whose life was cut short last Wednesday when Daniel de Jesus Rangel-Sherrer allegedly drove her into the woods and murdered her.
“This was going to be Diana’s senior year,” says Pamela Dunlap, a Greenville High teacher who taught Diana for the last two years. “She came to school with a new determination and focus. She was working hard to recover credits and graduate with her class.”
In the wake of such a senseless tragedy, students and faculty at Greenville High School have been left in a state of shock, but have exhibited inspiring courage, strength and resilience. A video on Facebook of a group of Greenville High School students mourning the death of a classmate is leaving viewers with teary eyes and heavy hearts.
“6th period will always love you, Diana Martinez-Gonzalez,” reads the video’s caption. Beside it is a hashtag: #greenvillehighfamily.
“Last Friday,” Dunlap told The Daily Caller regarding the video, “my students just felt they wanted to do something to show their love for her, so they decided to decorate her desk and share a moment remembering her. This has shaken so many of the students to lose their friend in such a violent way.”
“We are a family, like a giant tree,” one classmate sings in the video, “branching out toward the sky. We are a family. We are so much more, than just you and I.”
Responses by Diana’s classmates echo this sentiment.
“As you guys can see,” one peer commented on Facebook, “this was very much necessary. That was my shirt in her chair. Every day for the rest of my school year, I will go up to her chair and say hello. Not that anybody asked me to, but for myself.”
“We are a family at my school. RIP Diana,” another classmate commented.
Greenville County Sheriff’s Office’s master deputy Ryan Flood indicated in a press conference that Diana’s alleged killer, 19-year-old Sherrer, confessed “immediately” to a deputy upon being arrested, Breitbart reports. Sherrer allegedly told police that he drove the 18-year-old into the woods and shot her in the head after the two got into an argument. In discussions with police subsequent to his arrest, Sherrer reportedly stated that he was angry with the victim because she had been spreading false rumors about him.
WSPA News reports that investigators said Sherrer also held another victim against her will, but that she was able to escape. Sherrer is currently charged with murder, kidnapping and possession of a weapon during a violent crime.
The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement confirmed to Fox Carolina that Sherrer was in the country illegally. Breitbart reports that the coroner’s office found that the victim had been shot in the head multiple times.
Early on Thursday morning, with several of the victim’s family members in attendance, a judge denied bond at Sherrer’s first hearing, as WIS-TV News reports. ICE has issued a detainer for Sherrer, and until his next hearing, he will remain behind bars at the Greenville County Detention Center.