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Odessa tattoo shop raises over $10,000 for victims of mass shooting

After the tragedy, two tattoo artists designed Permian Basin-themed tattoos.
Credit: Lauren Ailles

ODESSA, Texas — August 31st is a day the Permian Basin will never forget. 

A mass shooting that lasted close to an hour, claimed the lives of seven and injured more than twenty.

“We actually saw him speeding through with the officers in pursuit. It was quite intense actually, the people we were tattooing were pretty scared as well. We locked ourselves inside trying to keep protected trying to keep from driving, because he was out shooting," said Jeylon Reyes, an artist at Bloodline Ink tattoo.

In times of tragedy and despair, it’s people like Jeylon who help make the community whole again.

After the shooting, two tattoo artist got to work and designed artwork representing the Permian Basin. 

The 3X3  tattoos were meant to benefit the victims and their families and at $40, they were offered at half the normal price. 

“So the ones we designed, they say are Odessa Strong, or they have a pump jack. Any kind of Odessa-Midland related item that we could fit inside of a Texas state," said Reyes.

Thames says he's already done close to a 100, and he’s only one of the tattoo artists on the mission.

“I think the first day we had a list of about 350 people," said Reyes.

And although the chaos is over, the emotional and physical pain for many, is still there.

“It still crawls underneath my skin every time I think about it or talk about it. Like I said, it’s a pretty a terrifying thing. It’s not really my favorite subject to talk about," said Nick Grondahl, an Odessa resident.

Grondahl said he left just minutes before the shooter made his rounds at Home Depot, one of many locations he drove through during the rampage. 

"It’s not really a thing you want to keep on your mind. I’m just happy I was able to get out of there before that happened," said Grondahl.

Thames was one of the hundreds who got a tattoo for the cause, and helped make Bloodline Ink Tattoo’s mark of $10,000.

“It’s really cool seeing the effect you have on your community. Helping out inspiring others to help" said Reyes.

The tattoo shop will be offering the "Permian Basin Strong" tattoos for $40 until Tuesday.