A look at Some of the Top Stories of 2017

Posted: Dec 31, 2017 10:15 PM Updated: Dec 31, 2017 10:15 PM

RIO GRANDE VALLEY – For 2017, the Rio Grande Valley saw many life-changing events from the conviction in a decades-long cold case to devastating natural disasters.

Here's a look at some of the top stories of 2017 and where they are headed going into the new year.

Just hours into the start of 2017 saw one of the years biggest stories.

State Representative Armando Martinez was struck in the head by a stray bullet around 3 a.m. New Year's day last year. 
The incident sent Martinez to the hospital in stable condition. 

Since then, Martinez began advocating for change in how events like this would be treated. 

Right now he's working on new legislation which would criminalize celebratory gunfire specifically. 

In April, the body of a San Benito teen was recovered nearly a year after she was reported missing.

The family's desperate search for 19-year-old Nahomi Rodriguez ended when a pathologist matched the teen's dental records to the human remains pulled from a canal near Rio Hondo. 

Rodriguez was last seen leaving her shift at a McDonalds in Harlingen during the summer of 2016. 

Currently, multiple agencies from Harlingen police to the FBI are investigating the case.

Right now there is a $25,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest and conviction with this case.

In June, the life of a valley sailor was lost, Gunner's mate 2nd class and Weslaco native Noe Hernandez.

Hernandez was one of the seven crewmen who died when the USS Fitzgerald collide with a cargo ship off the coast of Japan.

The following month, the valley said their goodbyes to Hernandez as his body was brought back home. 

According to two U.S. defense officials, preliminary findings suggest the crew of the USS Fitzgerald failed to understand and acknowledge the cargo ship was approaching and failed to take any action necessary to avoid the collision. 

Right now the incident is still under investigation by U.S. officials.

In August, the Valley was just missed by Hurricane Harvey. Our crews were live as the category 4 hurricane made landfall near Rockport. Damage ranged from Corpus to Houston. While the valley wasn't hit directly, many in the community made it an effort to help victims rebuild. 
Right now, many areas are still recovering.

In December, former priest John Feit was sentenced to life in prison for the death of Irene Garza.

The school teacher's body was found in a canal in April of 1960. She was last seen at confession at Sacred Heart Church in Mcallen. Feit refused to answer any questions about Irene Garza after his sentencing 

A few weeks before the end of 2017, the Valley saw it's first snow day in over 13 years. While it was only here for a few hours many people took the time to take as many pictures of the event as they possibly could.

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