It has been more than 24 hours since the lives of a family in Hidalgo County changed forever. This, after they lost several family members and their home in a fire this past weekend. Now, fire officials are speaking out on the importance of a simple device.
Just after 2 am, the Hidalgo County sheriff’s department, together with the McAllen and Alton Fire Departments, assisted to a residential house fire.
The three victims have been identified as Maria Isabel Maldonado, 37 years of age, her 5-year-old son Gustavo Maldonado and 15-year-old Jonathan Palomares, a family friend. Three survivors were taken to a hospital and are reported to be in stable conditions. An 11-year-old was taken to Galveston after receiving burns in 40 percent of their body.
The cause of the fire is still unknown but fire marshall John Franz, says the flames began in the living room.

Family members need the community’s help to raise funds in order to cover funeral expenses. They will be selling chicken plates tomorrow starting at noon at the 9441 block of La Homa road in Mission. You can also help the family through a monetary donation at