Man found in submerged van first confirmed weather-related death in Harris County

HOUSTON — A man rescued from a van submerged in Imelda floodwaters passed away at the hospital Thursday night, according to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office said.

Investigators said the driver was going westbound on Will Clayton when he approached an overpass in the 18000 block of Eastex Freeway. He paused briefly but then drove into the water, which deputies confirmed was about 8 feet high at the time of the incident. He was taken to the hospital in critical condition, where he pronounced dead a few hours later.

The driver’s name has not been released, but Sheriff Ed Gonzalez tweeted he is in his 40s.

Sheriffs deputies were able to extract the vans shortly afterwards. No other occupants were inside.

HCSO tweeted around midnight, dispatchers had field approximately 922 weather-related calls for service including 407 high-water rescues, 22 major accidents and 323 stranded vehicles.

In Jefferson County, a 19-year-old Fannett resident lost his life while trying to take his horse to safety.

Hunter Morrison was travelling through Imelda floodwaters when he was electrocuted and then drowned, the sheriffs deputies confirmed. The family released a statement on the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office social media thanking everyone, including people from across the country, for their condolences.

Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office Facebook Post:

“From the family of Hunter Morrison,

Hello everybody. Right now my family and I are going through one of the most horrific times in our lives with losing Hunter. Thank you for all the kind words and phone calls I have received over the past 8 hrs but I do want to clarify something…he wasn’t “saving” people. He was trying to move his horse, got electrocuted, and drowned. I wanted to make that known because I have had news people call me and want the story. I am not upset by any means but I just want the facts to be straight and not give him a sense of false heroism. Thank you for your kind words and if you hear the story being told wrong…please correct them. Thank you

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office has received calls from all over the country in reference to the tragic death of young Hunter Morrison. We will let his family’s statement stand. His family asks for privacy while they grieve.”

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