As a daughter of immigrants, Natalie Romero is known for her fight for equality.
When she learned white nationalists were planning to march on her beloved University of Virginia, the 20-year-old Houston native knew she wanted to stand in opposition against their message of division and hate.
When she told her mother Ericka Chaves she planned to attend the peaceful rally in opposition to the protesters, her mother was nervous:
“I told her to be careful,” Chaves said in an interview with ABC13, but her worst fears were soon realized:
Romero was among the 19 injured and one killed, when an angry, white nationalist crashed his car into a crowd of marchers who were protesting against intolerance.
Chaves learned of the crash when a friend asked if she was paying attention to the news.
Soon after, she received a call from the hospital with word her daughter was among the injured.
Romero, however, only suffered a skull fracture and other injuries. She remains hospitalized at this time.
After graduating from Bellaire High School, Romero enrolled at UVA on an ROTC scholarship.
After she graduates from the university, she is reportedly planning to serve in the army before transitioning to a career in public service.
If you would like to support the family during this frightening time, a GoFundMe is dedicated to the cause.