Officials search for 19-year-old Pharr man swept by current at Big Bend National Park

Local News

National Park Service rangers continue to search for a 19-year-old Pharr man who was swept by a current at Big Bend National Park on Sunday, according to a news release from National Parks Service.

Rene Cervantes Jr., 19, of Pharr was swimming with friends in the Rio Grande near Hot Springs at Big Bend National Park when a swift current swept him downstream at about 1:15 p.m., according to the news release.

National Park Service rangers and U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers initially searched for Cervantes at Hot Springs Canyon via boat, helicopter and ground searches . On Monday, rangers and officers continued to search using motor boats, canoes, kayaks and a helicopter.

According to the news release:

At the time of the incident, river levels at that location were 3,450 cubic feet per second (cfs), with a channel depth of 7.09 feet. Base flow for this stretch of river ranges from 50 to 200 cfs, with the rainy season adding significant increases following upstream rainfall.

River levels are expected to rise and stay at elevated flows for three to four weeks, according to the National Parks Service.

Cervantes is described as a Hispanic male with brown hair and brown eyes and a thin build. He was last seen wearing black shorts.

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