Young Midland Man Finds Ties to Tragedy at South by Southwest Festival in Austin

Young Midland Man Finds Ties to Tragedy at South by Southwest Festival in Austin

Anum Valliani

NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - 18 year-old Mason Endres's life is music. That's why friends say they were 200 percent sure she'd be at South by Southwest in Austin. But after tragedy struck Wednesday night, they were afraid her life could have been cut short.

Endres was one of the 23 people sent to the hospital when a man rammed his car into the crowd at the music festival. The crash ended up killing two people and hurting many others.

21 year-old Justin Langston awoke to news of the accident and immediately questioned if Mason had heard. He texted a mutual friend who was with Endres, "and next thing you know, Mason's the one that's involved and it's just like wow," he said. 

The rising singer/songwriter, who lives in Midland, said Endres was outside of Mohawk Bar downtown when the accident happened. It was a 21 and up night so she was waiting for Tyler the Creator to come out when the car came charging through the barricades. 

Langston doesn't know all the details yet because she lost her phone during the incident. He did tell NewsWest 9 she had to go in for surgery on Thursday morning, adding that Endres is okay now but she has a pin in her leg. Now, Langston is counting down to the evening until he can talk to her.

"I'm not good with these kinds of things, but I'll be most as positive as I can. I'll definitely ask her if she's okay, you know, like are you smiling or do you have a frown on?" he said.

Langston said the near-death experience made him appreciate life and realize things happen for a reason; he originally planned to be in Austin with her and could have encountered a similar fate or worse.

"There was a big possibility I was actually going to stay with Mason and hang out for the weekend," he said. "That feeling just amazes me. It's a reassurance in letting me know I'm right where I need to be," he said.

The two met when Langston was playing Rock The Desert in 2011. Since then, he says they've kept in touch through their similar connection to music.

"She live, breathes, eats music, everything is just music. She's really amazing. She's got a big heart and she's so interested and consumed by music, just as I am," he described.

He said even though she'd been hit by a car, there's no way that was going to keep Endres from jamming out.

"She might have been hit by a car going high rates of speed but I don't think that's going to stop her from her love of music," he said.