UPDATE: Additional details released in drowning deaths of mom, two children
Published 9:12 am Thursday, March 16, 2023
By Mary Meaux | Port Arthur News
Officials believe hazardous conditions created in combination by a southern wind near rocks running parallel to the beach to prevent erosion may have led to the weekend drowning deaths of a mother and her two children.
Samantha Alexander and her four children were at the beach Sunday when three of the five drowned. Cameron Parish Sheriff Ron Johnson said the family is from Ethel, Miss., and Samantha’s husband Caleb is working at Golden Pass LNG.
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Johnson said they were alerted at 3:35 p.m. when someone found a 3-year-old boy trying to climb to the highway. He was crying and said his mother went into the water. At that time authorities did not know how many people were in the water and missing, Johnson said.
By 4:07 p.m. one of the deputies found the child’s 9-year-old brother on the rocks. He was brought to a hospital and has since been released. At 4:18 p.m., a deputy found one of the child’s sisters unconscious on the rocks and by 4:30 p.m. the other girl was found on the rocks. They were ages 7 and 8.
Johnson said they were brought by ambulance to The Medical Center of Southeast Texas because it was closer than the nearest Louisiana hospital. The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office Marine Unit found the mother on the rocks at 6:49 p.m. Samantha and the 7- and 8-year-old girls died as a result of drowning.
A number of agencies were involved in the recovery of the family; Cameron Parish Sheriff’s Office, Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office, Johnson Bayou Fire Department, Cameron Parish Ambulance District No. 2 and the U.S. Coast Guard. Johnson said drones were used to help locate the victims.
A GoFundMe account has been set up to help a man whose wife and two of his children drowned over the weekend. The page is titled “Caleb Alexander and family with expenses.” On the page Michael Alexander, Caleb’s brother, offered thanks for the love, support and prayers for his brother and his family. The benefit organizer, Rebekah Metcalf, said the funds would assist Caleb with funeral and memorial costs, medical expenses and living expenses as Caleb takes time off work to be with his sons.
“This isn’t a situation anyone could have ever prepared for and we are all very very very grateful for everyone’s support as we navigate through this tremendous loss as best as we can,” commented Caleb’s sister Katie Howard. “Life is so cruel, hug your babies tight, tell the people you love how much you love them and remember how quickly life can change on you.”
The Port Arthur News is a sister paper of the American Press.