On the evening of March 20 in Eagle Pass, Texas, a small town on the U.S.-Mexico border about 150 miles west of San Antonio, U.S. Border Patrol agents on riverine patrol were flagged down by people on the Mexican side of the river. They alerted the agents to a woman and her two small children, a boy and a girl, lying unconscious on a sandbar near the south side of the riverbank.
The agents, with the help of Eagle Pass Fire Department EMTs, were able to resuscitate the woman and the toddler boy, who was hypothermic and semi-conscious by the time Border Patrol got him safely to shore. But the other child, a nine-year-old girl, was dead.
“We tried everything to bring her back. We tried for 20 or 30 minutes,” said Eagle Pass Fire Chief Manuel Mello when I reached him by phone on Monday. The waters of the Rio Grande are cold this time of year, he