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      Brownsville family loses only son days before Christmas

      Just days before Christmas, a Brownsville family loses their eldest child and only son, Alfonso Mata.

      20-year-old Alfonso Mata was killed in a car crash Saturday morning at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville where the sophomore majoring in criminal justice.

      He died with Eric Castilla and Blanca Espinal.

      Eric Castilla was another Valley native from San Juan.

      Blanca was Alfonso's best friend since freshmen year and the driver in the car that took their lives.

      "She would always take care of him, he would always take care of her," Jaqcueline Mata, Alfonso's mother, said. "They both had each others back and they both passed away at the same time."

      Jacqueline tells Action 4 that she is living a nightmare.

      "You don't expect for you to bury your children, your children are supposed to bury you but unfortunately God needed an angel and he decided to call upon my son," Jaqcueline said.

      Jacqueline received a call from a friend of Alfonso Saturday at 12:30 p.m

      He told her that there had been a car accident and Alfonso was in the car.

      The friend didn't know if Alfonso was alive.

      Jacqueline immeditaly called the hospital where they were sending the victims.

      They told her that her son wasn't in the car.

      However, her mother's instinct was telling her that wasn't true.

      "As a mother you know it, you can feel it, you know when he is gone and I knew it," Jacqueline said. "They kept on telling me it wasn't him, it wasn't him but I just knew it was him."

      Her sister-in-law confirmed it after she went to Alfonso's apartment in Huntsville where police were waiting.

      Jacqueline says that through this hard time what is keeping her strong is her son.

      "My son has given me strength, he wouldn't want me to be crying," Jacqueline said. "Why you crying for he would say so I have to be strong cause I know he is helping me."

      Jacqueline tells Action 4 News that Ponchito, as his family would call him, was a class clown.

      Alfonso loved to dance cumbia in his family living room with his two youngest sisters and cousins.

      They tell Action 4 he was a guy that would put a smile on anyone's face.

      After college, Alfonso planned to come back to Brownsville, "my Brownsville" as he would call it.

      He planned to either join the Marines or become an FBI agent in Brownsville.

      Jacqueline tells Action 4 that his heart was in Brownsville with his family.

      Funeral services will begin Wednesday at 1 p.m. at Sunset Memorial Funeral Home in Brownsville.

      Alfonso will be burried Thursday at Guillen Community Cemetery.