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Pati Mestas

October 6, 2017
This photo provided by Marilynn Herman shows Brandon and Pati Mestas hugging during a photo taken in 2011 in Las Vegas. Pati, 67, of Menifee, California, died during a shooting in Las Vegas. (Marilynn Herman via AP)
This photo provided by Marilynn Herman shows Brandon and Pati Mestas hugging during a photo taken in 2011 in Las Vegas. Pati, 67, of Menifee, California, died during a shooting in Las Vegas. (Marilynn Herman via AP)

The first time Alexis Magana drove over to her friend Brandon Mestas’ house, she asked how to find it.

“Oh, you’ll know,” he told her. “It’s the one blasting country.”

It was Brandon’s mom, Pati Mestas, who was the household’s country music fanatic. Pati Mestas, 67, of California, died in Las Vegas while listening to that favorite music. Magana remembered her as someone who was “fearless and bold” and always welcoming, from that very first day they met.

“She really was a firecracker,” Magana wrote to The Associated Press in a Facebook message. “I just never dreamed she’d be taken from us in an instant. Our firecracker is gone and now it’s just dark.”

Brandon Mestas, 33, wrote on his Facebook page that his mother surely enjoyed herself in her final moments.

“She left this world surrounded by friends, singing and dancing with thousands of people. If I had to write the script myself, I could not have done a better job,” he wrote.

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