On the morning of July 23rd, a week after Eva’s mural was painted, I drove up to the mural location and noticed two ladies sitting across from Eva’s mural. I assumed that they were volunteers and approached them. It turned out it was Eva’s best friends, Katie and Lilly.  They looked at me and said, “we’re having coffee with Eva”. They shared stories, a particular one about Eva doing Karaoke to Diamonds by Rihanna.

Monica Maldonado

Sandra Gonzalez’s Artist Statement

As a teacher and a muralist, it was important for me to honor the life of a teacher who was passionate about education and died as a hero.   

My mural “Shine Bright like a Diamond” portrays Eva Mireles surrounded by her favorite colors, flowers, glowing mountains, and diamond hills. This mural was created in five days and on the last day the Mireles family joined us in the completion of the mural. It was an afternoon of labor and love with Eva’s favorite songs playing as they took turns helping me finish this meaningful project. I witnessed the strong bond of a beautiful family, and I am thankful for all the stories that they shared with me.  Eva, you will always shine in our hearts and your love will always light our way.