Tahoka Restaurant Owner Reaches Out For Community Help In Liver Transplant Battle

Maria Garcia, a beloved business owner in Tahoka, Texas, is seeking assistance to continue pursuing her culinary passion of cooking food for the community. With over 35 years of experience, Maria finds solace in working in the kitchens of various restaurants and bringing joy to people through her dishes. Operating her restaurant, Big Dog, from Tuesday to Saturday each week, Maria has become an integral part of the local dining scene. However, Big Dog’s origins are rooted in tragedy, as it emerged from the ashes of another restaurant that burned down on October 11th, 2019. Maria, who had worked at the ravaged eatery for three years, yearned for an avenue to continue serving her community and found a solution through a food truck.

Just as Maria and her family were beginning to establish themselves with the food truck, a devastating blow struck when Maria was diagnosed with cirrhosis, a condition that caused her immense pain and hallucinations. Despite her health struggles, Maria remains committed to her culinary craft, using cooking as a means to momentarily forget her agony. Last year, she received the disheartening news that she needed a liver transplant and would be placed on a lengthy waiting list. Fortunately, Maria’s family rallied around her, with Reyna Herevia, her daughter-in-law, offering to donate a part of her own liver. In a show of solidarity and support, Maria and Reyna are now scheduled to undergo surgery in Dallas in late March.

During their time in Dallas, the family hopes to keep Big Dog running, as it serves as their main source of income. Keeping the restaurant operational will also serve as motivation for Maria’s recovery, giving her something to look forward to upon her return. To ease the financial burden of travel and medical expenses, a GoFundMe campaign has been set up by the family. This community effort demonstrates the deep appreciation and admiration for Maria’s culinary skills and her unwavering dedication to her craft, even in the face of adversity.

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