Youngest Orlando shooting victim was on the phone with mom while hiding

"West Catholic Prep is terribly saddened to report that Akyra Murray '16 has been confirmed as a victim of the mass shooting in Orlando this weekend, '" the school said in a statement.

The grieving mother recalled her daughter's final phone call while driving to the Orange County Coroner's Office to claim Murray's body.

Akyra Murray was in Orlando with her family, celebrating her graduation from West Catholic Preparatory High School.

Akyra Murray, right, seen here recently signing a letter of Intent to attend Mercyhurst College on an athletic scholarship. Murray was a standout student-athlete who graduated third in her class along with achieving the elite position of a 1,000 point scorer on the Lady Burr's basketball team. Her brother, Alex, attends college in West Palm Beach. "I just tried to tell her to remain calm and apply pressure to the wound", Natalie Murray said.

She was just 18-years-old. "We dropped her off at 11:30".

Just after 2 a.m., she and her husband received an alarming text message from their daughter that there had been a shooting and she needed a ride. Moments later, the phone rang. "All I could hear was my baby screaming".

Natalie and her husband, Albert Murray, rushed to the club to pick her up, and Natalie described the phone call she had with Akyra while in the auto before hanging up to call the police. "It was devastating", Natalie Murray said.

"These vigils allow us all to remember and morn, but they also allow us to stand united against these attacks and the hate that fueled them", mayor Kenney said. "We wanted somebody to tell us something".

Orlando city officials have not yet confirmed her death publicly. "She helped everybody", her father, Albert Murray, said in an interview with Philly.com. "I challenge everyone in the name of my daughter (Akyra-Murray) let's get back to loving, caring, and appreciating each other again". Losing a lot of blood. "Haven't found my daughter yet. Been here 9 hrs".

"I lost my daughter, one of the greatest inspirations in my life", he wrote on Facebook this afternoon.

  • Neal Todd