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“We’ll never get her back”: Daughter of Chaparral crash victim mourns her death

Amanda Aguilar remembers the moment she learned her mother died in a head-on collision. “I got a call from my aunt and she asked if I had heard about what happened,” Aguilar recalled. “She just said, ‘Your mom was in an accident and she passed away.'”

On Friday, Bernice Rios was a driving a minivan in Chaparral when she drove into oncoming traffic, according to New Mexico State Police. With her 55-year-old friend, Jose Ramon Garcia, as a passenger, her minivan struck a military vehicle head-on.

“It’s a call you’ll never forget,” Aguilar said, wiping back tears.

The state is investigating the case, but a news release said “alcohol does not appear to be a factor.”

“The last thing I said to my mom was that I love her,” Aguilar said. “Sometimes you wish you get five more minutes with your parent to just say, ‘I love you.”

Rios is a mother of four and a grandmother of ten, her daughter told ABC-7. She worked with special needs students and coached dozens, if not hundreds of t-ball and softball students.

“Being around kids and be able to help, helping people was my mom,” Aguilar said. “That’s who she was and that’s what she loved doing.”

The family has created a GoFundMe to help with her funeral expenses. They will also sell red enchiladas on Sunday, August 4th at the American Legion in Anthony, Texas on 221 Poplar Street. Anyone who is willing to help donate or help is asked to email

“She was our mom and we’ll never get her back,” Aguilar said.

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