MISSION, Texas (ValleyCentral) — A Rio Grande Valley family is seeking the community’s support after a suspected drunk driving crash killed a Mission family’s mother, injured the children and left the father in critical condition this week.
“It’s shocking,” said Ashley Chavez. “You see it on the news every day. You see that it happens to other people, but you don’t expect it to happen to your own family.”
Shortly after midnight Monday, a police officer witnessed a GMC Yukon run a red light and crash into a Ford Explorer containing five family members: a husband and wife and their three children, Mission police said. The three children and their father were hospitalized, and their mother was pronounced dead at the scene.
ValleyCentral spoke with Ashley Chavez, who is the niece of Oscar and Irene Treviño, who were in the Explorer with their three children in the crash, she said. Irene Treviño died at the scene.
After learning the news, Chavez started a GoFundMe titled “Treviño Family” to help raise money for medical expenses for the surviving members of the family and for her aunt’s funeral expenses.
According to Ashley Chavez, on the night of the accident the family left a family get-together and the oldest son offered to drive. However, the family’s Explorer was hit by the Yukon before they could get home safely.
On Thursday, Chavez told ValleyCentral that the two sons have been released from the hospital, but the daughter required an emergency surgery and has another surgery pending.
Chavez said that the father Oscar has several pending surgeries and remains in critical condition.
“As far as we know, all these surgeries he’s having, they could say 50/50 if he lives or if he doesn’t because they are big, risky surgeries,” Chavez said.
The Treviño family has six children in total, with three other children who were at home at the time of the crash, Chavez added.
“All the kids are under the age of 20,” she said. “The youngest are twins that are 7 years old… I believe the next oldest was at least 11 or 12. They just got the news as well that their mother has passed.”
The Treviño family was always able to lighten the mood and make everyone laugh, Ashley Chavez said.
As a truck driver required to travel frequently, Oscar always tries to make make time for his family, she said.
Chavez said her late aunt’s priority was always her children.
“She was always the mother that would show them off, because she knew she did a good job with them,” Chavez said.
The Mission Police Department told ValleyCentral that the man fled the scene of the accident, but was found approximately five hours later and “appeared to be intoxicated.”
Police said that man was admitted to the hospital and would be facing charges of intoxication manslaughter, intoxication assault and leaving the scene of an accident pending his release from the hospital.
Chavez said this is another lesson for those who get behind the wheel while not in the right state of mind.
“You don’t know whose life you’re putting at stake, it’s not just yours,” Chavez said. “You’re risking someone losing a daughter, a son, friend, brother, sister. It’s a serious topic that should be handled better.”
Chavez said the family is accepting donations on the GoFundMe page.
The case remains under investigation.