Community members rallied together over the weekend to support a grieving family.
On the morning of June 26, Mercedes Borquez Ahuyon, her four children with husband Chris Ahuyon, and her mother Sofia Borquez were on vacation in Chihuahua, Mexico. It was a trip they had completed several times in the past.
Mercedes was driving in the Conchos Station area near Chihuahua when their vehicle either stalled on train tracks or she did not see the train coming. The train crashed into the passenger side of their Chevy Tahoe, killing Mercedes, her mother Sofia, and two of the children: Cresencio, 6, and Cristobal, 6 months.
Chris Ahuyon, an Irving car mechanic, had stayed back in the United States. He is now at the bedside of his oldest son, 13-year-old Cesar, who is in serious condition at Hospital Infantil de Especialidades de Chihuahua. Cesar’s only surviving brother Cruz, 2, is also by his bedside.
In Grand Prairie on Saturday, friends and family organized a food fundraiser to support the Ahuyons.
“They’re like, ‘I’m so sorry.’ They hear the news, or they just see the post, and they come out here and they’re just supporting us,” said Vanessa Ahuyan, Chris’ cousin.
Vanessa and her sister Emily helped plan the fundraiser for Chris.
“What happened? We don’t understand, and we may never know,” said Chris’ brother Mike Ahuyan. “My brother, he’s just broken right now, but we’re here for him. We’re all here for him.”
In addition to the food fundraiser, Cesar’s baseball community held a car wash fundraiser in Irving on Saturday.
Chris and family friend Jesus Ortiz coach baseball together and organized the car wash fundraiser.
“It’s the least I could do, you know?” Ortiz said.
Several of Cesar’s teammates helped wash cars as they continuously arrived.
“Support from all over, from different towns and cities, and strangers come up and offer prayers,” Ortiz said.
Karen Clark of Arlington was one of the strangers who saw the event on social media.
“I was just devastated, along with them,” Clark said. “Who could even imagine that? And I wanted to be a blessing and give them a donation.”
Mike said the tremendous support is overwhelming as he waits for his brother and nephews to come home.
“We lost four great, sweet souls in this tragic event. Nobody could imagine anything like this,” he said.
A GoFundMe page is also accepting donations to ease the financial burden on the family. The money will be used for the continuing medical bills of the survivors and the costs of bringing the four family members back to Texas for burial, likely sometime next week. The family plans to hold a joint memorial service in Irving for all four family members.
On Tuesday, July 12, Aspen Creek Grill at 4300 W. Airport Freeway in Irving will donate 10% of its sales to the Ahuyon-Borquez family.