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Drowning claims life at county park

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Special to the Bulletin

A 25-year-old man from Houston on an outing to Bandera County Park at Medina Lake on Aug. 28 drowned after making his way to a buoy a short distance from shore, struggling to stay above water and disappearing under the water, authorities said.

Bandera County Justice of the Peace Mike Towers who was called to investigate the death said Bandera County Emergency Medical Service officials administered cardio-pulmonary resuscitation to Juan Soriano Flores after he was retrieved from the water about 3:50 p.m. on Aug. 28 but could not revive him.

Flores had come to Bandera County with family and friends to get away from a hurricane that had been headed toward Houston late last month before they decided to make a trip to the county park, Towers said.

Flores’ family members said he was not a very strong swimmer but had gotten to a buoy used as a no-wake warning for boaters about 25 yards from shore before he started thrashing his arms in distress. Towers quoted witnesses as saying he went under water and never surfaced.

Another visitor at the park helped friends and officials from the Medina Lake Volunteer Fire Department find Flores and get his body to shore where he was pronounced dead.

Towers said there was no evidence Flores had been drinking or doing anything wrong at the park. The judge said he may have simply overestimated his swimming capabilities.

“It was just a sad, sad accident,” said Towers.

He ruled the death an accidental drowning.

Officials with the Bandera County Sheriff’s Department and the Texas Game Wardens office joined the Medina Lake fire department and EMS in responding to the call. Game W ardens also filed a report on the death.