Sioux City Police say the medical examiner has concluded the family of three died as a result of drowning after their car crashed into the Missouri River on Monday, October 16th.
The Police Department responded to reports of a vehicle driving into the Missouri River on Monday. A traffic investigation determined the vehicle crashed through a chain-link fence and drove into the river. Witnesses described the vehicle floating down the river before becoming submerged.
Crews from Sioux City Fire Rescue, South Sioux City Fire Rescue, Sioux City Police, Woodbury County Sheriff, Iowa Department of Natural Resources, and Siouxland Dive Rescue searched the river on Monday and Tuesday and were able to locate what was believed to be a vehicle on Tuesday Morning.
On Tuesday, October 17th at 3:40 pm a missing persons report was made by family members of 3 missing family members last known to be at WalMart on Floyd Boulevard driving a 2001 Honda Civic Ex that had not returned home. The family told media that they feared the car in the river was their family after seeing reports on social media about it.
Multiple Agencies in the Siouxland area worked through the week to devise a plan to safely recover the vehicle from the River. Concerns about the current and conditions of the river slowed the process. On Saturday, October 21st the vehicle was located by a diver and a tow strap secure and then pulled from the river. Officials confirmed it was the vehicle the family was to be driving and that 3 individuals were inside.
Officials now confirm the 3 occupants of the vehicle as 53-year-old Salomon Medina-Zavala, 43-year-old Angelica Gonzalez-Gonzalez, and 16-year-old Vanessa Medina-Gonzalez.
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