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Berievement Fares
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There's Nothing Sympathetic About Airfare!

I mean it! 
One of the hardest duties I had, was to sit on the phone in the middle of the night and listen at people cry in distress and say, "I'm sorry but the airfare for travel at this time with no advance purchase is One Thousand Five Hundred Fifty dollars; What credit card will you be using?"   
I don't care if your Mother is dying, or about to die, you have lost your job, have no money and really, really need to get home to say goodbye to someone, it will cost you a fortune!
Because of my employment with the airlines, I now tell everyone, "If you move far away from home, always have at least a couple thousand dollars in the bank to get back home in an emergency.  The Airline Industry does not care what you are going through, it's a seven day or less fare which means a bankroll of money to travel. The most they will usually do is cut the fare in half which is still about a thousand bucks.
Here's Something Desperate To Try!
1.  Try changing to a nearby less popular, less traveled airport.
2.  If you have them, use your frequent flyer miles.
3.  Despite what the agent tells you on the phone, INSIST ON SPEAKING  WITH A SUPERVISOR   Let them know you are not running a game and offer to show proof of distress, such as a physicians statement or funeral program upon return.  Some supervisors are more willing than others to help, so if that doesn't work, hang up, wait a half hour or so and repeat the whole thing.
4.  I have tested and tried different companies, and the best online fares are always with  I use to assign seats etc. for passengers booked through Hotwire and I promise you they are A Legitimate Company.  I researched fares as wide as New York City To San Francisco leaving the same day and returning two to three days later (no Saturday night stay), and the fares were as much as one fourth of what the airline carriers will offer you.  It's a lot easier to come up with four to five hundred dollars than it is to get two thousand bucks at the last minute!

I hope this helps!
You can run a fare search from the box below  and see if you get the good results I did.
Good Luck and May God Bless You during this difficult time.