Funeral set for Schaumburg father killed in crash
The last time Maria Borla saw Amando Chavez he was sitting in the front pew of their Schaumburg church.
His two oldest children were celebrating the end of their Bible camp with a song-and-dance showcase at the Church of the Holy Spirit in late July. Chavez, a devoted father, had to have a front-row seat to see his daughter and son perform.
"It hurts a lot knowing they're not going to have that support anymore," said Borla, the parish secretary.
Chavez, 41, was killed Wednesday night when a Streamwood man charged with driving under the influence of drugs rammed into his Mazda minivan on East Schaumburg Road. Feroz Q. Khan, 25, was speeding when he tried to drive between Chavez's minivan and a third vehicle, prosecutors said.
Khan, who has seven prior speeding violations and one pending speeding violation, spent the day of the crash "kayaking and smoking weed and then smoking some more weed at a friend's house in Carpentersville," Cook County assistant state's attorney Jennifer Gates said Friday.
Borla has set up an online fundraiser to support Chavez's wife, Alicia, and their four young children. As of Saturday morning, the GoFundMe page had raised more than $7,000 of its $5,000 goal.
"When something horrible happens, we always refer and try to find the goodness in everyone, but in his case, he really was an amazing dad," Borla said. "He loved his children more than anything else in the world."
Borla has worked alongside Chavez's wife, the religious ed secretary at Church of the Holy Spirit, for about eight years. She is "in shock," Borla said.
"Anything she needed, she would call him and text him, and he would be right there to help her," Borla said.
She admired him as a generous, reliable husband and father, the youngest son in a big family. Chavez enjoyed fixing up old cars, music and grilling, but he was happiest with his children.
"He's always so joyful when he's with the kids," Borla said.
That's why the void left by his death is such a "tragic loss," said Borla, who keeps thinking about Chavez, holding one of his twin babies, in the front row of their Schaumburg church.
"I keep going to that image, and it's beyond devastating," she said.
Visitation is set for 3 to 8 p.m. Sunday at Ahlgrim & Sons Funeral & Cremation Services at 330 W. Golf Road, Schaumburg. His funeral Mass will begin at 11 a.m. Monday at Church of the Holy Spirit at 1451 Bode Road.