Since the mass shooting at the Cielo Vista Walmart on August 3, 2019, the message ‘El Paso Strong’ has become a prominent part of the city’s identity. Emblazoned on billboards, murals, and especially on t-shirts, the motto helped galvanize a shocked community.

One of the many tributes produced by locals in the hopes it would help our community heal and stay strong was a video by Devin Cuevas. The self-professed “guy with cameras” put together a video featuring locals in front of well-known locations around the city flexing their biceps in a show of, well, strongness.

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Using the Khalid song “Angels,” the video begins with the words “no matter how great the sorrow nothing will hold us down because we are El Paso strong” before showing shots of locals flexing their arms, most wearing the black t-shirt with the message and the star that became the most popular of all the El Paso Strong tees.

Devin Cuevas Youtube

The 3-minute clip ends with photos of the makeshift memorial behind the Walmart where the shooting took place and the words “in memory of the 22 lives lost on August 3, 2019.” (At the time the video was produced and posted in 2019, Guillermo “Memo” Garcia had not passed away. He lost the fight on April 25, 2020, becoming the 23rd victim of the mass shooting.)

Cuevas told a local news station when interviewed about the video at the time that he wanted El Pasoans to continue living life not in fear but with a sense of strength and resilience. I’m sharing the video again, because even two years later its message and the feels it invokes is something our community still needs.

Devin Cuevas Youtube


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