UPDATE: Three bodies found in minivan pulled from Leon River
Page Set up for Lynn, Holli and Bobbie
CORYELL COUNTY, TX (KXXV) -
UPDATE: The vehicle that has been submerged in the Leon River after being swept away by flood waters Sunday was pulled out of the waters on Wednesday with three bodies inside.
According to the Coryell County Sheriff Johnny Burks, the water that was over Coryell County Road 321 receded in the early morning hours Wednesday, exposing the top of the Dodge minivan that had reportedly been swept off the road early Sunday morning.
After pulling the minivan out of the water, three bodies were recovered. They were identified as 63-year-old Lynn McLaughlin Grubb, 84-year-old Bobbie Correne McLaughlin, and 11-year-old Holli Elizabeth Morgan.
All three are residents of Gatesville.
Scott's Funeral Home was notified and transported the bodies to Central Texas Mortuary in Temple. Water rescue crews have called off their search for the day for three people who are missing after their car was swept away by flood waters near the Leon Junction in Coryell County.
The fast moving Leon River is overflowing after last week's heavy rains. Dive teams plan to return Wednesday to try and recover the vehicle spotted in the water Sunday, as well as look for the people who were in that car when it got swept away by rushing waters.
As of Tuesday, the water in the Leon River is still too deep and running too fast to be safe for divers. The high water mark continues to drop, down six inches from where it was Monday.
The car was seen drifting away on County Road 321 just after 10 a.m. Sunday morning.
The Coryell Sheriff's Office says they believe the driver tried to cross a low water crossing when the current swept the car away. Crews located the car submerged under 9 feet of water, but the driver and passengers were no where to be seen.
Sheriff Johnny Burks said the fast moving current and conditions made it impossible to get evidence that could help law enforcement know who they are looking for.
"The water is so murky that we can't even tell the license plate, what kind of vehicle, what color or anything on the vehicle," Burks said.
DPS helicopters and divers from Morgan's Point searched for over 6 hours for any signs of life coming from the water.
Several fire and rescue crews responded, including Killeen, Fort Hood, and Austin, along with Coryell County Sheriff's deputies and Parks and Wildlife.
"Rescue drivers felt, because of the currents in the water, that there was no way they could do anything safely," Burks said. "And if there is anything in the vehicle, they could recover anybody because of the conditions of the water."
Authorities say they won't be able to start up the search again until flood waters recede in the next few days, but sheriff's deputies will be stationed around the area to monitor the water and block roads.
The type of vehicle and the names of its occupants have not yet been released.