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Migrant family saved from drowning by Texas agent after Rio Grande crossing goes awry

A family of migrants was rescued from a watery grave Thursday by a Texas Department of Public Safety agent after they were caught in a current while attempting to cross the Rio Grande from Mexico.

New photos and video exclusively obtained by The Post show the family of nine wading through the water near Eagle Pass, Texas, around 5:15 p.m. local time.

As the current took them, the group could be heard yelling for help as National Guard officials watched from the shore.

Before the family could be swept downstream, the agent — dressed in a pink shirt and wearing sunglasses — jumped into the river with a life preserver ring and helped carry at least one of the young children in the group as he ushered the rest to shore.

The Post was not immediately able to further identify the man.

A mother is seen giving her youngest son to the Texas agent while her other children desperately hang on.
James Keivom
The migrant family was yelling in desperation while being caught in a current on the Rio Grande.
The migrant family was yelling in desperation while being caught in a current on the Rio Grande.
James Keivom

Once on US soil, the family was taken to an ambulance, where the children were evaluated by members of the Eagle Pass Fire Department.

Eventually, the family was processed and put in a US Customs and Border Protection van.

It was not immediately clear where the migrants hailed from or where they intended to travel once entering the US. The area where they were attempting to cross the river is known for rapidly changing water levels.

Migrants attempting to cross the Rio Grande river on their way through the United States-Mexico border were rescued by a member of the Texas Department of Public Safety(wearing pink shirt) on Thursday, July 21, 2022 in Eagle Pass, Texas.
A Texas Department of Public Safety agent rescued a family of migrants from drowning.
James Keivom
The agent, wearing a pink shirt, sprang into action and delivered a boy to safety first.
The agent, wearing a pink shirt, sprang into action and brought the family to safety.
James Keivom

Eagle Pass is located in the Border Patrol’s Del Rio sector — which saw the highest number of migrant encounters ever reported by CBP for the month of June (45,225). The Rio Grande Valley followed closely with 44,667 encounters.

Since Oct. 1 of last year, the Del Rio sector has seen 326,177 encounters, a more than 118% increase from the same period 12 month earlier, which only saw 149,062 encounters.

Overall, CBP officials recorded 207,416 migrant encounters in June, for a total of 1,746,119 stops along the southern border since Oct. 1 — the most the agency has recorded for any fiscal year since 1960.

A mother is seen giving her youngest son to the Texas agent while her other children desperately hang on.
USBP Del Rio Sector Chief Jason Owens says his agents are being overwhelmed by migrant encounters.
James Keivom
A member of the Texas Department of Public Safety(wearing pink shirt) holds a migrant child he saved from drowning as a group of migrants attempted to cross the Rio Grande river on their way through the United States-Mexico border on Thursday, July 21, 2022 in Eagle Pass, Texas.
The migrant family was processed by Border Patrol after being rescued.
James Keivom
The agent is seen using a life preserving ring to bring the migrant family out of the Rio Grande.
The agent is seen using a life-preserving ring to bring the migrant family out of the Rio Grande.
James Keivom

The influx of border crossings in Eagle Pass has strained Border Patrol resources in the region, USBP Del Rio Sector Chief Jason Owens told San Antonio’s KENS5 this week.

Owens revealed that his agents encountered approximately 3,431 migrants this past weekend alone — and have been dealing with groups of more than 300 people daily.

“This is a — this is not normal traffic for the Del Rio Sector. It’s something that this sector has never seen before,” he said.

“We don’t have the organic resources available to us right now to deal with the flow that we’re seeing.”

To help with processing the new arrivals, Owens revealed that officials from other sectors across the state have stepped in, calling it “an all-hands-on-deck effort.”

CBP did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.

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