SAN MARCOS (AP) – Two children still missing after they were swept away nearly three months ago in the flash flooding along the Blanco River in Central Texas are the focus of a renewed search.
Search teams converged on three areas now exposed by lower water levels in hopes of finding the remains of 4-year-old Leighton McComb and 6-year-old William Charba, who were with their families in a vacation house in Wimberley that was torn apart by raging floodwaters on Memorial Day weekend.
Nine bodies have been recovered and identified since then.
“We have gathered areas of interest that were identified either by dogs or other intelligence we have gathered,” said Don Gentry, with the Texas Search and Rescue team.
Jonathan McComb, Leighton’s father and the sole survivor, returned to the scene Saturday for the first time, joining searchers who were on foot, in boats and using dogs.
“It’s a beautiful place, but it’s got some pretty bad memories,” he said. “It’d be nice to just finish this chapter and to bring everybody home finally. It would be nice, it would be awesome to have everybody back together.
“We’re out here and we’re going to continue to be here until that day comes.”
McComb, of Corpus Christi, said he suffered a broken sternum, punctured lungs and other injuries when the vacation house was ripped from its foundation, carried downstream and slammed into a bridge. His also lost his wife and 6-year-old son.
“I was pretty beat up,” he said. “My shoulder still hasn’t recovered from everything. I’m doing some work on that. It still hurts, all the bumps and bruises, and I’ve got lots of scars.”
Kim Charba, William’s aunt, said she knows the children are “in a better place.”
“We want to bring Leighton and Will home,” she said. “And I think for the healing to really begin we need to take them home.”
She also thanked people in the area for the support they’ve provided: “It’s what gives you the strength to make sure that we finish this,” she said.
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