RIO GRANDE CITY, Texas – A 31-year-old woman is dead following a fire at the Mesquite Grill in Rio Grande City. The owner of the restaurant says the victim was a family friend visiting for the holidays.
Ayssa Hinojosa, daughter of owner, “We had a room because my father has had several surgeries so when he had those surgeries him and my mom would stay here. So they would stay here so we had that spare bed. She was too shy to stay at our house so she asked if she could stay here instead.”
According to Rio Grande City Fire Chief Manuel Muniz, the woman was found unresponsive near the restaurant’s entrance. “We did encounter a young female that was pulled out and taken to the Starr County Memorial Hospital.”
Fire crews responded to the 600 block of Old El Sauz Road at about 1:30 a.m. where the family owned business was engulfed in flames.
“When we got here, when we saw it we were heart-broken we were scared. We were trying to get our friend out but we’re just heartbroken. More so for the loss of our friend because the business could be brought back up, that doesn’t matter what matters is the life that was lost.” said Hinojosa.
The family tells Local 23 News they were only a month away from celebrating the restaurants 8th anniversary. A restaurant known for it’s great food and vintage items; all taken away in the fire.
“It was Mexican-American, all types of food. It was very family oriented, we loved helping the community, having the community here. We were very proud of our business.” added the Hinojosa’s
Investigators have declared the restaurant a total loss. The cause of the fire is still unknown. If you would like to help the Hinojosa Family rebuild their restaurant visit: