According to Texas Game Wardens, around 7 Saturday evening, families were out by the spillway at Lake Palestine and the Neches River when chaos struck. Children were out in the water when the water had become too rough to swim in.
“Kids were playing in the water and one or more of the children got in distress,” Mike Hanson, Texas Game Wardens Captain, said.
Adults heard the children’s cries for help and quickly got into the risky waters to get the children out safely.
“Several adults jumped in,” Hanson said. “They had difficulty as well.”
36 year old Israel Rincon went missing after jumping in to help the others struggling in the rapid waters.
Game Wardens searched for Rincon’s body throughout the evening, ut when darkness became a factor and the swift waters became too dangerous, they waited until sunrise to continue the search.
Rincon’s body was found Sunday morning around 10 a.m.
Hanson said everyone else was okay.
“The gentleman that we recovered this morning was unfortunately the one that couldn’t make it out,” Hanson said. “No one else was injured.”
Hanson said this type of accident is very rare to find in this particular area.
“It is rough water due to the recent rainfall,” Hanson said. “This tragedy is not something that usually happens here. It’s been years and years and years since it’s happened in this area.”
With the amount of rainfall Texas has had recently, it has made the force of the current a lot stronger.
Hanson said these waters are not safe to play in.
“There’s a lot of water coming over the spillway and people need to stay out of it.”