ODESSA, Texas (KMID/KPEJ) – Loved ones of two Midland sisters are completely distraught after the passing of two people so close to them. Several close friends of the Almaras sisters spoke out about the tragedy of not only losing one person suddenly but losing two.

July 7th brought a lot of pain and suffering to the Almaras family after the Odessa Police Department confirmed that 42-year-old Hortensia Almaras from Midland died at the hospital after a car crash on East Highway 191.

Police found that Don Bassett was driving the car that hit Hortensia from behind and caused them both to go off the road and into the barrier. Bassett was arrested and charged with manslaughter.

But, now, loved ones of Hortensia said it’s all weighing heavily on their shoulders.

“As a mother just think about it, because they won’t have their momma no more,” said close friend

While the family was trying to cope, her sister, Martha, passed away just two weeks later. Their family believed she died from a broken heart.

Laura Gonzalez is another friend of the victims and added, “Back to back death, it’s too much is too much for the children, the family, for friends, everybody.”

Another friend, Petra Self, emphasized the heartbreak, “It was heartbreaking to know that she more than likely died from a broken heart. It’s heartbreaking, because everybody knows death isn’t easy, but when you don’t have not even three weeks to heal from one to the other, that makes it even worse.”

Friends are in complete disbelief from the sudden passing of two people they love, just weeks apart.

Herminda Hille, realized how precious life can be from their tragic accident. She added, “Life is never guaranteed. You know what i mean? We could be here to one moment and go the next, you know, and is. I just don’t know what to say.”

Now everyone is focused on caring for the 11 children the sisters have left behind.

“I’m gonna do my hardest to check on them and just the thought of everything. It’s the kids that hurt me the most, you know. Nobody, nobody deserves that,” cried loved one Erica Garcia.

A fundraiser was held to help Hortensia’s children but since Martha’s passing friends are now holding another fundraiser to help all 11 children.

Gonzalez mentioned, “Nobody is even at this age. You’re not ready. So I hurt for them, mostly, the family. What’s going to happen now? You know, because we can all say I’m going to be there for them, will be there for you. But, you know, everybody goes their own way. So we need to make sure that they’re at least, you know, have some financial stability.”

The fundraiser for the Almaras family is this Saturday from 11 am to 4 pm at the old La Misión at 1008 South Big Spring Street, in Midland.

Family members will be raising money that will go directly to all 11 children of Martha “Noni” Almaras and Hortensia “Chita” Almaras.