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Among the 11 Missing in Texas: Family Torn From Dad

'We have accepted' Laura McComb, 2 kids 'are gone,' says sister
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 27, 2015 6:44 AM CDT
Among the 11 Missing in Texas: Family Torn From Dad
A road barrier and signs lie along the curb covered in debris after floodwaters overran the banks of the bayou in downtown Houston on Tuesday, May 26, 2015.   (Pat Sullivan)

(Newser) – Authorities say a third body has been pulled from the Blanco River that crested three times above flood stage during relentless storms in Central Texas. That brings to 13 the number of people killed by the holiday weekend storms in Texas; another four were killed in Oklahoma, reports the AP. Hays County officials say 11 people remain missing in the area, including eight people who were in a vacation home that was swept away and slammed into a bridge downstream early Sunday. KVUE talked to the sister of Laura McComb, who was in the home along with her husband and two kids, Andrew, 6, and Leighton, 4. Shortly after midnight, "[Laura] called me, she said 'I'm in a house. I'm floating down the river. Tell Mom and Dad I love you and pray,'" says Julie Shields.

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Husband Jonathan McComb was found alive on a river bank miles from the home; he suffered a broken rib and sternum and a collapsed lung. Shields says he was holding hands with his family when the house, which sat atop stilts, "slammed into a bridge and ... broke in two," separating them. "When you hit a bridge moving at 35 to 40mph on the river, it's equivalent to a 70mph head-on" collision, Hays County Judge Bert Cobb tells the AP. A heart-wrenching quote from Shields: "I think recognizing ... what's happening with the weather, we all know and we have accepted that they're gone." Jonathan appears to be the only one of the nine vacationing in the home to have survived. Also missing from the home: homeowners Ralph and Sue Carey and their daughter, Michelle Charba, who was with her husband and 4-year-old son, reports NBC News. (Read more Texas stories.)

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