Palm Desert, CA
The community is mourning after the death of an 8-year-old boy at that school shooting in San Bernardino.
Jonathan Martinez was in a class for children with disabilities, and his parents want to raise awareness about his condition.
His family wants to honor his memory by getting the word our about Williams Syndrome.
A local young woman knows it well because she has it, and wants to share her story.
"I am so sorry that you had to lose a child with the same thing as me because I know it’s very difficult."
That is 19-year-old Megan Moore’s message to Jonathan Martinez’ parents.
She feels connected by their shared condition, Williams Syndrome.
"Even though I didn’t know him, even though some of my other friends didn’t know him, we all feel like we did know him somehow or someway and we just have that connection."
As far as Megan knows, she’s only person in the Coachella Valley with Williams Syndrome.
Dr. Hilal Abu-Zahra with University of California Riverside says, "Williams syndrome is a genetic syndrome characterized by unique facial features as well as a social and happy personality trait. As well as, it does come with a heart condition problem as well as potential for electro-light abnormalities and a intellectual disability as well.
Megan said, "I have heart issues myself…the problem is that we’re not always that happy…. Because sometimes its hard to be myself because I know I have a disability too."
Those with Williams Syndrome tend to be gifted with striking verbal abilities, social personalities and an affinity for music.
"I play the guitar, I like to sing, I like to hang out with friends and stuff like that," said Megan.
Megan goes to school and works two jobs.
Megan already works to raise awareness about Williams Syndrome, and that’s what Jonathan’s family said they wanted as a small light in the darkness of the murder of a child.
"I don’t understand why someone would do something like that to an innocent young child who could have grown up and lived a normal life, and he would have had a chance," said Megan.
If you want to learn more about Williams Syndrome, click HERE.