UVALDE, Texas — For the past four years, Michael Buentello has been serving local families as a Funeral Director Apprentice at Martinez Funeral Home.
However, the morning of May 26 he was headed to Uvalde, Texas to help serve the families affected by the mass shooting.
"When we got there we were just assisting, being support staff to the funeral director and funeral home. There we were more on the backside of everything, as far as getting personalizations together for the funerals," said Buentello.
He has worked many funerals in the past years, but he said assisting with those 17 funerals was tough.
"It was heartbreaking on us. It was very emotional and was something we could never imagine that we would be going through," he said.
Alongside another Apprentice, Heather Gonzales, he met with families to make personalizations for arrangements.
"I know I had regular communication with one family. They shared stories and kind of laughed and then at the end of the conversation I felt broken. I would walk outside and shed a few tears because we can't believe this actually happened," said Buentello.
Coming from Odessa to Uvalde to support those affected is something he said he was honored to do and a time he'll never forget.
"It was an honor to help out. It really was, being here from West Texas, for us to go down there and be the help and support that they need it was an honor for myself and Heather and to help them out," said Buentello.