Co-workers at the IHOP on FM 78 near Montgomery Road said from now on, every time a dish breaks, they’ll remember “Mama,” 63-year-old Celisina Escarment.
She was struck and killed by a car Tuesday as she crossed the street in front of the restaurant where she worked as a dishwasher.
Julie Pilgrim, a waitress, said “Mama” had an unusual, inexplicable reaction to the sound of glass crashing to the floor.
Pilgrim said, “She would yell out from her little post in the back, ‘Happy birthday, baby!'”
For those unable to attend her funeral Saturday, Pilgrim said as a tribute, “We are all going to break a dish here outside and we’re all going to say happy birthday to our mama.”
Vanessa Camacho, another waitress, said, “She’d get mad at us. She would yell at us, and then we’d go, ‘OK, Mama, we love you.'”
Escarment already had raised four college-educated sons in Florida before moving to San Antonio three years ago after her husband died.
“At one point, she had two or three jobs just to make sure that we weren’t getting into the wrong crowds in the hood that we were in,” said Jules Nelson, who spoke on behalf of his brothers.
He said their mother was loved everywhere she worked, but at IHOP, she found an extended family.
Manager Karen Green said the restaurant has set up a memorial fund at the Wells Fargo on FM 78.
Nelson also said as Christians, his brothers want to reach out to the driver, who police said would not face charges in their mother’s fatal accident.
“We forgive him,” he said, in hopes they can personally share what their faith and their mother taught them.”That’s one of the biggest things is -- forgiveness.”