Alyssa Ramirez, 18, was driving home from her high school prom when her vehicle was caught in overwhelming and unprecedented flood in Devine, Texas. She called 911 and then called her father, according to CNN, who told her to stay put and that he was coming to get her.
But in a parent’s worst nightmare, he could not save his girl in trouble. He could not find her despite looking with her mother until morning, according to Fox News. She was only a couple of miles from home. About a dozen people remain missing and about a dozen have died in severe weather in Texas that caused widespread flooding. Family members are still missing from a vacation home in Hays County that was swept away.
In Devine, about 25 miles outside San Antonio, residents remember Ramirez for her accomplishments in school and her clear and joyful Christian faith. She was homecoming queen, student council president and yearbook co-editor, according to the Daily Beast. She also starred on the tennis, volleyball and cheerleading teams, according to CNN. Fellow students and community members all raved about her kindness and consideration to others.
The Washington Post interviewed Ramirez’s school district superintendent Linda McAnelly, who said Ramirez was “always smiling” and also described Ramirez as “Vivacious. Happy. Beautiful, in and out. She had a strong faith in God, just great ethics. A great young person.”
In one of Ramirez’s last Facebook posts, she wrote, “Faith grows through hardship. … Even though it is never pleasant to experience hardship, it teaches us to persevere and to cling to God. He will never desert us.”
The Daily Beast called Ramirez a “Texas Homecoming Queen with a ‘Heart for God,’” and reported that despite her abundant accomplishments, social media references about Ramirez from classmates and community members referenced her faith first and foremost.
“Alyssa was very active in our church community,” said Pastor Mike Berrera of First Baptist Church in Devine. “There wasn’t a girl or guy she didn’t have time for. She was one of those kinds of kids, I think, who was born with a smile on her face, and it was just a blessing that she was A-OK with the Lord when she died, there was no doubt about that.”