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Three children drown at Sylvan Beach


Sheriff Hawthorne reports that on Thursday, August 8, at approximately 7:28 p.m., the Chambers County Sheriff’s Office was notified by the LaPorte Police Department of a possible multi-fatality drowning at Sylvan Beach Park.

Sylvan Beach Park is a county park within the city of LaPorte, Texas, and Harris County. However, the bay waters that border the park are wholly within Chambers County.

Upon arrival of the Chambers County deputies it was learned that a family from the Houston area were swimming in the park when an otherwise beautiful afternoon took a tragic turn. Six members of the family, including the Mother, Father and four children ranging in age from 7 to 13, began having trouble in the water. The Mother and Father, along with a 10 year old male child were able to make it back to shore with help from nearby good samaritans.

Tragically, the three remaining children: a 13 year old girl, and two boys aged 11 and 7 were seen by bystanders going under water and not resurfacing. An immediate search of the area waters began and all three of the children were eventually recovered a short distance from where they were last seen.

Chambers County Justice of the Peace Larry Cryer pronounced all three children deceased at the scene and ordered autopsies to be conducted by the Jefferson County Medical Examiner’s Office.

The investigation in to this devastating incident is ongoing and the names of the deceased will be released at a later time once all assurances have been made to take care of the family and contact is made with other immediate relatives.

“I would like to thank Sheriff Ed Gonzalez and members of the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, the Port of Houston Authority, the LaPorte Police Department, the Houston Fire Department and all the first responders who worked collectively throughout the evening on this incident. The assistance and dedication of all first responders was instrumental in the recovery of the victims and in helping to care for the family members,” said Sheriff Hawthorne.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of those involved in this tragedy.