CORPUS CHRISTI (KIII NEWS) - "Christmas will never be the same without her."
A family is mourning the loss of 41-year-old Brenda Lee. The mother was killed after being hit by a drunk driver on Saturday morning. Police say she was ejected from her vehicle and pronounced dead on the scene. The other two occupants, her sons, sustained severe injuries; one of them was ejected as well.
Police arrested a 25-year-old man on charges of intoxicated manslaughter; his identity has not been released.
Now the family is celebrating Christmas in the hospital after the two boys had emergency surgery. Considering the nature of the accident, they're lucky to be alive.
Irma Hinojosa says her sister was headed home from their mother's house when they were struck and got a heartbreaking call while she was asleep.
"She just kept saying you know, my sisters dead Brenda's dead," a call coming from Hinojosa's other sister.
Hinojosa says she didn't believe what her sister was calling and immediately rushed to the hospital.
"On the way over there I just prayed and prayed you know just for the best to know that it wasn't her at all but..."
But, it was true, her older sister Brenda, had passed away.
Now they're remembering the daughter, sister and mother who had been a single mom of five for over 10 years.
"She was a beautiful person inside out, she was always there for anyone and everyone," Irma says.
According to Hinojosa, the family just lost an uncle over a week ago and believe Brenda is with him, watching her family from above. Irma adds as angry as she is with the man who is at fault for her sister's death, she says one day, she'll be able to forgive him.
"I've lost my sister, my mom lost a daughter, and it's hard but I know that I will, forgive and when that time comes I know in my heart that I will have that peace in my heart."
Hinojosa says they are staying strong for the two young boys as they recover from broken bones, internal bleeding and lacerations as they remember the young woman, gone too soon.
"We will always love her and have her in our hearts forever and we will meet again, it was just a blessing that she was a part of our life and she'll always be no matter what."
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