SANTA FE STRONG: Print shop's simple design uplifts community

SANTA FE, Texas (KTRK) -- A year after the deadly Santa Fe High School shooting, a local print shop is proving just how strong the community is.

Earnest Roberts and his wife Aurora are trying to keep up with demand.

The Patriot T's owners are seeing a lot of green and gold these days, colors the owners finally have in stock.

"We couldn't keep the green ones, or get them from neighboring states," Earnest recalled. "They even sold out."

It's a demand he created after he developed a "Santa Fe Strong" print. He plastered the words on shirts, hats, and signs following the tragedy that left 10 dead.

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"There hasn't been a month where someone hasn't come in here and hasn't bought a yard sign or a Santa Fe Strong shirt," Earnest recalled.

He charged $15 for a shirt. The profits didn't go to him.

Instead, he wrote a check to the Santa Fe Education Foundation for nearly $20,000.

"For us, that's a pretty sustainable donation," he said.

It's an amount the small owners say got a boost after they got an unexpected call last May.

"He did mention they were for Justin Timberlake," Aurora recalled. "I giggled."

She felt another emotion after she received a photo of someone wearing the shirt.

"Justin Timberlake," Aurora recalled. "Yes, I couldn't believe it."

Timberlake wore the Santa Fe Strong shirt during his show shortly after the school shooting and dedicated the concert to the community.

"For someone of his stature to reach out and support our town means a lot," Aurora said.

The donation drive behind the shirts is over, but the demand hasn't gone away.

Patriots T's has no plans to retire the design. It's a true test that no matter what happens, this print shop has proved Santa Fe truly is strong.

In all, around $1.3 million was raised for the education foundation. Money was split between victims' families and survivors.

The school is still collecting money. It says funds will be used for student activities that promotes healing and academic achievement.

SANTA FE STRONG: Remembering the victims of the Santa Fe High School shooting


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