Photo: Antonia Lee Candelaria
Nine-year-old Antonia Candelaria is the first Oklahoma tornado victim to be buried. The Plaza Towers third-grader lost her life on Monday when a EF-5 tornado hit Moore, Oklahoma leveling her school. The death toll stands at 24, 10 of which are children.
Nicknamed “Ladybug” by her family, the Oklahoma native was born on November 16, 2003. The youngster has been described by her family as a free spirit that “always danced, not walked, to the beat of her own drum.” The musically inclined youngster was set to perform at the school’s talent show tomorrow, the last day of school.
In Candelaria’s obituary the family describe the special friendship between Antonia and her best friend Emily Conatzer who also perished in the tornado. Reports indicate the girls died while holding hands inside the school when they both perished.
Candelaria is survived by her extensive family that includes Cindy and Darin Torres her grandparents and her great grandparents Sal and Fidelia Candelaria. Services were held at the South Colonial Chapel in Oklahoma City.