Honduran teen tries to reunite with mother who drowned in Rio Grande river

HOUSTON – Cristopher Alvarado Sabilón can’t wait to be reunited with his mother in Texas. But those hopes ended in tragedy this week after the Honduran teenager drowned in the Rio Grande River, his family said.

According to his family, the 14-year-old boy set out on a hike from Honduras to the US-Mexico border with his two cousins ​​and sister, all minors.

While struggling to cross the river that separates the Mexican city of Piedras Negras from Eagle Pass in Texas on Saturday night, Cristopher’s sister reached out her hand towards her brother to try to help him cross the river. strong flow.

But she was never able to keep Cristopher. It was so dark, the 16-year-old girl could barely see anything. That’s when she started shouting her brother’s name.

“He never answered me,” Cristopher’s sister, who is still managed by the Department of Health and Human Services with her cousin, told the family in Spanish in a phone call on Wednesday. “I never saw him again.”

Border patrol agents said they began searching for Cristopher after learning he went missing while trying to cross the river on Saturday night.

Four days later, Roxana Sabillón, Cristopher’s mother, received a photo that confirmed her worst fears. Her son’s body was found washed up on the banks of the Mexican River.

Cristopher Alvarado Sabilón with his sister and cousins.
Cristopher Alvarado Sabilón with his sister and cousins.Courtesy Alvarado Sabillon family

“They took half of my life, they took mine,” the mother told Noticias Telemundo an hour later, still in disbelief. “Now all I have left is to stand next to a wooden box to say my last goodbyes to him. And the hug I didn’t give him,” Sabillón said in Spanish.

Sabillon immigrated to the US in 2016, leaving Cristopher and his sister with their paternal grandparents in Honduras. She believes that the years rampant crime and gang activitythis took a toll on children and minors, possibly pushing her children to run away with their cousins ​​without her knowledge.

During the four days Cristopher was missing, at least 10 other people who immigrated to the US drowned while trying to cross the river on the spot. On Wednesday, border patrol officers said they had rescued about a dozen people who were “swept away their feet by the swift current“while trying to cross the Rio Grande near the Camino Real International Bridge.

During the last financial year, border patrol agents searched for more than 7,000 migrants reported as missing, Noticias Telemundo reported.

The grieving family is currently trying to transport Cristopher’s body from Mexico to Houston for burial.

They are also trying to get a humanitarian permit to allow Cristopher’s grandparents, who raised the boy in Honduras, to attend the funeral in Houston.

Edgar Turcios, Sabillón’s husband and Cristopher’s stepfather, said in Spanish: “The dream of that kid is to come to the United States with his mother here.

Damià Bonmatí reported from Houston, and Nicole Acevedo from New York.

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