Draylen Mason’s best friend says friend’s death in bombing still hurts

Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — One year after the death of Draylen Mason during the Austin bombings, his best friend is still coping with the loss — and still plauged by unanswerable questions.

Tuesday marks a year since Mason, 17, was killed in the second of the bombings that terrorized Austin in early 2018. A year later, Mason’s best friend Oswal Garcia still misses his friend.

Garcia remembers their time together as part of Austin Soundwaves — a youth orchestra program — where Mason sat as first chair, Garcia sat as the second, and the two would joke around. “Sometimes just playing around like “You’re slacking. You need to do better. You gotta do this.” Just those little things he would say.”

According to Garcia, Mason was in the process of planning for his 18th birthday, which would never come. 

“The biggest question has always been, like, why? Why did it happen? Why did he do it? The people he chose — was it random?”

Garcia remembers the morning of the bombing, when he’d rushed toward Mason’s house after learning about the explosion in the area. A house where he can never visit his friend again.

“There’s times when I still get up with that feeling to just kinda go to his house.” 

Mason was a double bassist who had already been accepted into the Butler School of Music at the University of Texas at Austin — before even graduating. 

At the time after Mason’s death, Garcia told KXAN:

“What I’m going to miss the most is just having my same partner next to me. Having him next to me, telling me, “Yeah, it’s going to be fine,” you know. “Everything will be okay.”

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