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      Family scrambles to fund funeral services for Applebee's employee

      Melinda Kruger recalled her son TMs goal Tuesday, to fix-up his dream car, a Mitsubishi Eclipse.

      He had been working at the Applebee TMs in Harlingen to save up the money he needed.

      But Saturday during his break at the restaurant, Kruger died.

      Police records indicate he choked on a piece of food, which cut-off his airway.

      His mother is still in disbelief.

      "I was just in shock that he had choked, Kruger said. They told me ~you need to get to the hospital and you need to get here fast. TM When I heard that, I got a pain in my chest - I knew something was wrong."

      Her son was dead by the time Kruger arrived at the hospital.

      Now the grieving mother is scrambling to come up with more than $7,000 needed for funeral services.

      She's hoping her son's career of service to others will help fund his funeral

      "We need to gather together friends, family, people that knew him people, that didn TMt know him " I just hope their hearts go out to him because maybe he was their waiter maybe at Applebee TMs, maybe at I-Hop, maybe they knew him from high school|he was just a great guy.

      Kruger is keeping strong to get through the tough days ahead, but said there is still a lot more she would like answered about her son TMs final moments.

      "It's something that is a question in my mind and as a mother it pains me - I just want to know (if) everything was done to help my son, Kruger said. Was everything done to try to save him? That TMs closure - I just want to know that he was helped in the proper way.

      If you would like to help the Melinda Kruger with funeral expenses, you can make a donation at any Wells Fargo Bank under the account name Christopher Jared Kruger.